Saturday, August 2, 2014

The Monk's Cave

In the heart of the Province of León is Valdevimbre, a sleepy town of wine-cellar dotted hills with less than 1000 inhabitants, but where wine is celebrated in all its forms. Next week the Wine Festival begins. Besides multiple bodegas, many of them cave cellars, you can visit the Museo de Vino (the Wine Museum) which is divided into two sections, one a traditional wine-cellar cave and a new section dedicated to wine tasting, courses in viticulture and thematic teaching on wine cultivation and processes.

There are ancient wine production tools throughout the town at various locations like the restaurant bodega, La Cueva del Cura, which have great tourist appeal for those who appreciate rustic and traditional old country charm.

La Cueva del Cura, dates back to the 1700s and serves traditional delicacies and meals of León: red meats, always from locally pastured animals, fresh and salted cod, local cured meats, tortillas (potato fritattas), stuffed roasted peppers and much more. Even with the heavily weighted meat selection, I enjoyed a highly satisfying and delicious ensalada mixta with the greens, tomatoes and asparagus all fresh and local and setas a la plancha, wild local mushrooms grilled in garlic and olive oil. The *Sobremesa included a lively, enjoyable time with Ryan, who's visiting this month and Esteban, our contractor for the house remodel.

Sobremesa: After the main meal of the day, which usually takes place at around 2 or 3 p.m., the Spanish often linger on at table drinking coffee and/or liqueurs and chatting, playing cards, reading or watching TV before returning to work later in the afternoon. While estar de sobremesa is also occasionally applied to the period after the evening meal, it is more usually taken to mean after lunch, and between 2.00 and 5.00 p.m.

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