On Saturday or host family took us north to Ribera del Duero about an hour and a half outside of Madrid known as one of the most amazing red wine regions of the world famed for its Tempranillo. Our visit at Figuero with the owner and his family was an experience we shall always cherish. During our tasting of some 4 or 5 wines, we also had chorizo, salami, bread and superb Jamon Iberico de Bellota which I shall elaborate more on in a later posting.
We headed to lunch in a nearby teeny village where our hosts found a fabulous inn and restaurant called Fuente de la Acena in an ancient converted mill on the Duero River.
We enjoyed our amuse of monkfish pate as we saw the water flowing by. Cecina de Leon is a local specialty we have tasted elsewhere but comes from this region and is another aged and dried meat but this made from ox and probably my favorite. Another starter was the Foie casero con chutney de mango or huge slabs of duck foie gras pate on thin toasted bread with mango chutney that could have won a prize and again was priced at a ridiculously low 10 or 12 Euros!
I had a superb glass of Domine 2015 Rueda/Sauvignon Blanc blend that I loved and I need to add that is virtually every restaurant we went into, even in the big city of Madrid, a glass of wine generally runs 2-5 Euros maximum and that's $2.16-5.40. I've never seen a hotel or five star restaurant at the United States that can do this pricing.
Some of us ordered Cod Tacos with baby octopus, mushrooms and garlic cream which was nothing of the sort as a huge piece of fish came out looking like a portion for almost two people. It turns out in this region that tacos actually means a large portion or platter.
Lomo de merluza was a gorgeous hake fillet with vegetables and cockles, and Sam adored his Hamburguesa de Lechazo or local lamb burger which came also on a large plate without a bun, but eith superb sweet mustard.
A dish of zucchini ribbons which were wrapped in bacon was topped three huge scallops. Each of these dishes rang and at somewhere in the 12 to 17 Euro region which actually blew me away.
Fresas salteadas con sorbete de Tempranillo was it desert worth it just for the wine flavored sorbet but the marinated strawberries were equally spectacular. Soufle de Chocolate y Caramelo was a gooey rich treat as well.
We also realized that lunch in Spain is it true experience that you don't have to do it with a local family and it takes two to three hours.
Again we were so appreciative of our new friends here.