fbpx

Northern Fare


Breath-taking landscapes, delicate seafood, ancient traditions and a strong identity shape the Spain you’ve never imagined

Best time to go

All year round

Suggested Length

8-10 days

Ideal Traveller

Professional
Explorer


Something very special is brewing in the North. Asturias and Cantabria, two of the most beautiful and bio-diverse regions in Spain, for years eclipsed by neighbouring Basque Country, are claiming their place in the Spanish Olympus of food. We believe they already have.

When people think of Spain, they imagine infinite beaches under an incombustible sun, bulls and bullfighters with scintillating costumes, rice and seafood paellas, guitars and flamenco, old palaces and ancient Moorish mosques, but there is another Spain: remote, different, unique.

Asturias and Cantabria were the last territories conquered by the Romans. Their people offered such resistance that even the one and only emperor Caesar Augustus had to settle here in person to supervise the conquest. Nor could the Muslim armies bend the people of these lands, and, in fact, it is from here that the whole Spanish re-conquest of the peninsula was forged. The topography of this region has deeply carved its personality, culture and gastronomy.

A wild and steep coast constantly whipped by a cold sea offers one of the best seafood and fish harvests in the world, humbly barbequed at family-run beach grill restaurants. Fire, salt and smoke, nothing more. Los Picos de Europa, with its own Alaskan-like wildlife and sceneries, territory of wolves, bears and some of the best dishes in Spain such as the fabada and the cocido montañés (mountain stew). In inaccessible damp caves, strong and spicy blue cheeses such as Gamoneu and Cabrales are stored, patiently enduring their process of fermentation, for then they are worth their weight in gold.

The greenest valleys of pure beauty, ancient houses on pillars, shepherds and herds lost in the mountains, iron pots with simmering stews, cider houses, postcard fishing villages, anchovies like you’ve never tried before, some of the best preserves in the world, oysters, goose-neck barnacles, crabs, the crunchiest puff pastry… here, more than anywhere else, as Josep Pla said, the kitchen is the landscape inside a pot.

The Experience

Inhale the pure air, smelling the
brutal sea, while walking the incredible
trails of the Picos de Europa or the cliffs
facing the Cantabrian Sea, home of some
of the best treks on the continent.

Stroll through the Cantabrian valleys next to the beautiful Tudancas, a hyper-resistant native breed that is gaining fame among local cooks for its tasty meat. Sample different choice cuts at a rural family-run steakhouse specializing in this meat..


Find yourself surrounded by a
cloud of sheep guided by a local shepherd
in a Pasiego valley. Experience suckling
goats’ meat that melts like butter
in your mouth.

Watch local artisan women clean and fillet the anchovies by hand (called sobado) and discover what a real anchovy tastes like in a special tasting with local producers aboard a sailboat navigating the Cantabrian coast.


Indulge your sweetest
dreams in a unique experience
savouring the best puff pastry
that man has ever made,
in impossible and irresistible combinations.

Following a cheese-maker and his donkey, climb to the cave where they keep their most precious treasure: a wheel of fermented milk, blue in colour, with a spicy taste and intense smell. For cheese addicts like us, this is the equivalent to experiencing 1001 Nights.


Revere the magical art of fermentation in a mountain cider house, where you’ll feel intoxicated by the smell of fermented apples and invaded by a captivating happiness generated by this elixir of gods

 

A taste of the route

Anchovies:
Cantabrian anchovies are some of the world’s finest
Natural artisan cider
Craft beer
Cabrito:
roasted suckling
goat
Hojaldre:
delicate light flaky
pastry
Cocido montañés:
traditional rich hearty bean stew
Fabada:
traditional rich hearty bean stew
Quesada pasiega:
typical desert of Cantabria
Fish:
hake, seabass, red scorpionfish
Seafood:
clams, mussels, lobster, spider crab,…
Pitu de Caleya:
free-range poultry of exceptional meat
Artisan blue cheeses aged in caves


other journeys you might like