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Spain report, Part 3 - Cadiz and Jerez

rrems | Nov 20, 201410:17 AM

Information on CH for Cadiz and Jerez was non-existent, so we again relied on Michelin and Tripadvisor. I hope this post will prove useful to future visitors to these cities.

A full report on our Spain trip is on my blog:

Having driven for five hours from Salamanca, we settled into our room in Cadiz and, after changing clothes for the warmer weather, set out to have lunch at Balandro, a lively and popular restaurant and tapas bar facing the sea, which was highly recommended on Tripadvisor. We opted to have tapas at the large horseshoe bar, and had tripe stew with cumin and chickpeas, fried anchovies with fried piquillo peppers, fried mixed seafood with the same peppers, and braised pork cheeks with gnocchi in a delicious sauce. With bread and a bottle of Rosado wine from the region, this great meal came to less than 40 euros.

Dinner was at El Faro, a long-established traditional restaurant. Unfortunately, it was not the best example of its type. None of the food was bad, but nothing was exciting either. The seafood soup was excellent, but the albondigas of seafood were not albondigas (meatballs) but actually croquetas, potato with a hint of seafood in it. The very good sauce with tiny clams redeemed it somewhat, but it was not what I was expecting. The presa Iberica was good but a bit overcooked, as was the duck breast. A pavlova with berries was a decent dessert. Bread was the typical Spanish kind, i.e. awful. The better places we have dined at had good artisanal breads. We had a good bottle of a local wine that was a blend of many grapes and was quite good, for under 20 euros. With water the bill came to just under 100 euros, not bad for the price but I really would not recommend this place.

We are big fans of sherry, so a trip to Jerez and a tour of the Lustau winery was part of our plans. Lustau produces some of the highest quality sherries. The tour was very thorough and interesting, with a wonderful guide explaining how each type of sherry is made. We then tasted six sherries, several Finos, an Amontillado, a cream and two Pedro Ximenes, and also a Moscatel. We bought two bottles of Pedro Ximenes at a great discount.

After the winery, we headed to lunch at Reinodeleon, a gastronomic tapas bar and restaurant. We had some wonderful tapas, which included a potato salad with thin sliced octopus, millefeuille of foie gras with Pedro Ximenes gelee and 2 fruit sauces, bruschetta with chicken, cheese, bacon and barbeque sauce, and oxtail stew in a pastry shell. We drank a local wine, Roble 2011, a blend of Tempranillo, Syrah and Merlot. It was excellent and cost less than 10 euros. A superb lunch for 40 euros including coffee.

Back in Cadiz, we had dinner at Sopranis, which is highly recommended by both Michelin and Tripadvisor. It did not disappoint. The food was superb and a tremendous bargain. We each had two appetizers, crab ravioli wrapped in lettuce, in a soy-based broth, duck ravioli, raw langoustines, and an egg with mushrooms and black truffles. Main courses were pigeon and beef tenderloin. For dessert we shared a cheesecake. With water and a bottle of a local red, the bill was 100 euros. A great dinner and a great bargain.

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