Sunday, June 17, 2012

La Piteria- Posibilidades Para Todos

It somehow occurred that on our first day in Madrid, we came across one of the best restaurants I have encountered not just in Spain, but in Europe in general. First, a disclaimer: La Piteria is not typical Spanish food. For the kind of Spanish culinary experience that would make don Quixote proud, one must sit at a bar or outside table, and order a beer or wine to drink and tapas for the group to munch on. Generally, these tapas include a variety of meats and cheeses typical to the city you are visiting. Therefore, the experience of eating in a restaurant which would not seem out of place in the United States is not, as I previously mentioned, typical. A menu including vegetarian food was enough to provoke a sigh of relief as i had expected that vegetarianism would prove an impossibility on the Iberian peninsula. Better yet was my reaction when the food arrived and produced such a savory culinary sensation on my palate. Flavors from a variety of spices from around the world intermingle in stuffed pitas, freshly made pastas, and a selection of salads. Carnivores fail to be disappointed, as all of these meals have options containing meats. The first time we visited the restaurant, I ordered pasta with mushrooms and asparagus, and the second time a pita filled with corn, rice, curry, pineapple, lettuce and tomato. Both dishes were phenomenal. All meals are served with a little appetizer of bread with a homemade tomato dipping sauce to whet your palate. The service at la Piteria is fantastic- my family and I were on the verge of earning the title "regulars" as we ate there twice in three days. On our first visit, we were served by a kind older man who didn't mind in the slightest taking time to speak with us and share information about himself and learn a bit about us. On our second visit, it was a Filipina woman whose eyes lit up upon hearing that my mother once lived in her native country. She even was kind enough to deduct our dessert from the bill.

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