I had the chance to visit La Manera, which I eyed on a former trip to Valencia but didn’t have time to stop at, and it just didn’t disappoint! First I got the cutest flat white I’ve ever been served, then a really yummy granola (I really liked the mint leaves-it was a surprisingly good flavour pairing) 😋
I will say the tablespoon they brought was way too big to eat without spilling everything out though, so I ended up using the coffee spoon.
Later we visited La Pilareta. We had been there almost a year ago, but mussels weren’t available as it wasn’t the right season. This time we were lucky and we could FINALLY have our Valencian mussels! (Plus other delicacies)
Mussels are called clotxines in Valencian, and that’s why the bar is called La casa de les clotxines, ie “the house of mussels”.
The batter in these calamari was nicely thin, yum!
After my slightly-delayed-in-every-sense-but-not-enough-to-claim-compensation flight finally landed, things became a bit of a whirlwind and so my hopes for live blogging went away… so here we are!
We had a burger at Black Turtle, the “caloret burger”. The name of this burger is such an excellent example of Valencian sense of humour 😂
A former mayor once delivered a really confusing and bewildering speech when inaugurating the Fallas. “Caloret” was one of the most prominent words in this public performance, and it didn’t take long for people to start making fun of it (and also using it as inspiration to create all sorts of memes… and eventually a burger, of course! 😂).
Here for you to watch:
We also had a horchata. I had a “mixta”, which is 50% iced, 50% liquid horchata. The best!
I also can’t make this image have the right orientation; this editing interface doesn’t show me that option on my mobile. Gah! I’ll change it later when I’m in front of a computer.
We tried a place called Palao for dinner. The food was really yummy and the ingredients felt fresh and tasty! Good find (although there were lots of serious contestants in the same street, and we were agonising as to which one to choose).
These were so comforting and delicious 😋
There was a touch of warm spice here, but not so much that you can’t cope with it if you’re Spanish AND not used to spices. Very tasty and serving it lukewarm was a great idea as it was the right temperature: too cold and you can’t taste the flavour; too hot and it becomes overpowering.
These tomatoes tasted wonderfully sweet and tomatoey! Not sour and dusty. Best tomatoes I’ve eaten in a long time…!
In a column in the FT, Madison Darbyshire talks about the latest sensation in coffee circles: “the parfait cup of coffee” that costs £15. It is a really carefully concocted drink devised and served at the Café Alain Ducasse in King’s Cross Coal Drops Yard, is made of single origin beans from Yemen (100g for £59) and is brewed as filter. At the end of the column, and all in the name of Science, she buys “black filter coffee from a high-street chain”, pumped out from a Thermos, and drinks it from a paper cup, plastic lid and all. Then she declares: “It tasted distinctly of airport”.
Let’s gloss over the fact that this writer seemed to either not be aware of the fact that requesting filter coffee from a high-street chain is basically subjecting your taste buds to early death, or didn’t care about it 😏, and let’s focus on the more interesting aspect: what other things taste distinctly of airport?
The soggy scrambled eggs slash omelette for breakfast on long haul flights—specially if it comes with a few small, soggy and shy mushrooms embedded on it.
Hard rock bread buns, low fat wholemeal croissants (the horror, the horror), cold-on-the-verge-of-frozen bread and other Crimes Against Bakeries (British Airways, I’m looking at you 👀).
Turbulence Tea Time: scalding hot tea served in cups too wide to hold its contents without the operator’s manual assistance (i.e. having to hold the cup and compensate for the aircraft’s swings, or risk minor burns and tea stains all over me 😂)
The Dead Fruits Society and Soggy Club for Salads And Miscellaneous Vegetables: two venerable institutions represented at almost every carrier menu, often disguised with modern hipster adjectives like “Freshly cut”, “Blanched”, “Crisp”, etc.
Food so salty even the oversteeped and ultratannic Turbulence Tea (without sugar) feels sweet.
“Stews” which are 99% stock cube, 1% water.
Antimatter, disguised as dessert: impossibly sweet confections that pack 4000 kcals in 25 cl, give or take. Each spoonful could power an elite athlete to run three marathons (back to back).
Very dry Chardonnay wines (the ones that make your jaw go “UUUUURGH, WHYyYyYyY?”)
A foamy substance that wants to be milk and tastes of nothing.
Burnt coffee at the lounge.
Residual brown liquid after washing the espresso coffee machine at the lounge, stored in thermos and served as “coffee” at the plane. It can be a serious competitor to Turbulence Tea Time in terms of burn potential. If they run out of this, they can also improvise a quick replacement with soluble coffee.
Small cans of beer.
Sparkling water with ice and lemon.
Very sweet and creamy coffee: I don’t do this anymore, but I used to have frappuccinos and other creamy coffee based drinks desserts when I flew, so the taste vaguely reminds me of those times.
What else makes you think: “ah yeah, airport!“? Comment away! 😃 ✈️