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Pintxos and tapas are usually eaten in bars or taverns as a small snack while hanging out with friends or relatives; thus, they have a strong socializing component, and in the Basque country they are regarded as a cornerstone of local culture.


It is also very convenient for tourists too. Our previous post (see part 1 here) showed various platefuls of pintxos we had along our way to some sightseeing destinations – a market here and a museum there.


The photos shown here were all taken during one lunch period at the bars and taverns located in the old town (Parte Vieja) of San Sebastián-Donostia.


The area is a bit touristy but it became famous partly because of the pintxos bars here. The beach, waterfront and some of the city sights are just a few minutes away.

We were doing a kind of bar-hopping, except that the main objective was to try different kinds of pintxos.


If you search, there are lists of the best pintxos-tapas bars in this part of town online.


We stopped by Ganbara which is one of the better known tapas/pintxos bar. It was packed and nearly impossible to place an order.


Cool sparkling white wine on a hot day.


Ganbara piled their special ingredients on the counter – mushrooms and peppers.


We ordered their famous mixed mushroom with egg yolk. It is so simple and delicious that we have made a note of the idea and will try to replicate the dish at home.


We had jamón ibérico in croissant – it was light and yet fatty, salty too.


We also had the spider crab baked tart and chorizo sausage roll. The idea of the tart sounded more interesting than its taste. The rolls were however divine.


All were accompanied by skewers of something sharp and salty – olives, pickles and anchovies.


One of the other places where we stopped do not display the tapas dishes on the counter. At Borda Berri, another well-known tapas bar, the items were all listed on a board. As far as we saw, few items were served on a stick here.


We ordered the mushroom risotto – Arroz “Bomba” con hongos.


We also tried grilled octopus – Pulpo a la plancha con Membrillo.


And we ordered Oreja de cerdo con romescu (pig’s ear). The photo looked rather dull so we are skipping it here.

It was fun eating lunch this way, albeit a bit hectic. Everything tasted great here.



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