You’ve probably heard of Pamplona because of the legendary running of the bulls that happens annually during the summer. You also may know that Hemingway staggered drunkenly through the streets here and immortalized this part of Spain in The Sun Also Rises. What you might not know is that in Pamplona, the people don’t eat tapas; they call them pintxos instead, and they are delicious, cheap, and abundant.
I started with a traditional tortilla of eggs, potatoes, ham and cheese. It came with a crust of bread to mop up the grease from the cheese, and when I finished it I was already starting to feel full!
This beautiful pintxo was stuck in the microwave for about ten seconds for the goat cheese to melt a bit; together with a light raspberry sauce and the manchego crisp it was more of a dessert than anything else. The tomato gave it a nice burst of juiciness in the middle.
I went down the street and tried this skewer; for one Euro I wasn’t expecting much, but it was surprisingly good. A tiny bit dry, but otherwise smoky with a hint of heat.
The marinated mushrooms made this pintxo over the top–it was good to start with, but it really felt like a meal because of the heartiness of the mushrooms. They soak them in olive oil, herbs, and plenty of garlic and when you put them in your mouth you begin to slide off your seat with happiness.
Finally, I had this glorious pintxo. The tomato marmalade and the dusting of oregano gave this one a sweet edge to balance out with the nuttiness of the cheese and the Jamon Serrano.
As an added bonus, I treated myself to a pastry with custard in the middle–it was cold and crisp and perfectly sweet.
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