Last week I was on a quest for the best tapas in Seville. With over three thousand Seville tapas bars, knowing just where to plunge in can be overwhelming. However, with the help of knowledgeable locals, I believe I found the best tapas bars in Seville, and I want to share them with you!
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How to Experience the Best Tapas Seville Spain
One of the reasons that I return to Spain is for the laidback lifestyle and the Spanish “joy of living.” A way to immerse yourself into this relaxed style is to experience a tapas tour of bars in Seville.
Slow Down – Slow Food
While seeking the best tapas Seville, we first need to slow down from our unfortunate American breakneck pace. That way, we experience tapas in a relaxed manner, the way tapas are meant to be enjoyed. I know that can be difficult after traveling so far. But, really, there’s no rush, so take it easy and refrain from ordering more than one drink and one tapa at a time. Then as you sip, savor and people watch, you can decide if you want to stay and ask for more. Or choose to move to another place and enjoy your next tapas there.
A perfect way to take the first plunge into Spanish culture is to hire a guide to make sure you taste only the best tapas in Seville Spain. My tapas shepherd was Elena from Devour Food Tours. Although she was born and raised in Seville, the young woman attended university in North Carolina and now teaches English as a second language at la Universidad Loyola in Seville.
Elena definitely revealed all the insider tips and tricks to doing tapas right. She guided me to only authentic, family-run businesses to taste the tapas that her family, friends and she like best. So then, let me pass on her secrets and the five best tapas in Seville you can’t miss:
The 5 Best Tapas in Seville
1. Jamón Ibérico and cured meats of the region
The most iconic tapas in Seville are thinly sliced Jamón Ibérico, or Iberian ham served with bread and cheese. Maestro Marcelino, a delicatessen with a long history in Seville, presented three types of top-grade, delicious Jamón Ibérico so we could sample each.
> Chorizo Iberian
Chorizo Iberian seasoned with sweet paprika (“It’s not like Mexican chorizo—our palettes are not made for hot and spicy,” revealed Elena.)
Salchichón—delicious cured meat that looks like salami but is not
> Cane de Lomo
Cane de Lomo–translucent, shiny, slices of pork tenderloin (the shine comes from the acorns on which the pigs free-range feed during their last four months)
> White pork
White pork—not cured but slow-roasted and similar to pork belly, but meatier
The experts at Maestro Marcelino paired the cured meat tapas with Vermut Clásico or Vermouth Classico. The fashionable aperitif is popular in Seville right now. I had the opportunity to sip it just like the Sevillanos do: straight and on the rocks. Served in a lowball glass with an elegant “cut” design, the vermouth, a fortified white wine, was made in Cordoba for Maestro Marcelino. We sat next to the kegs while we enjoyed our tapas in Seville.
2. Black-Label Jamón Ibérico and Manchengo Cheese
“Now, we’re going to the Jewish quarter for ham,” announces Elena and then waits for the laughter. “Now THAT’S Seville, where everything is blended—religion, food, culture and music.”
Our next stop on our foodie tour is one of the oldest tapas bars in Seville. Since 1870, Las Teresas Café-Bar has decorated its walls with historic Seville memorabilia and hung huge legs of ham from its ceiling. Experts age the black-label acorn-fed Iberian ham for 2 to 5 years—the black conical cups hanging from the legs capture the drippings. Elena explained that the price tag on these black-label pig legs—complete with hoof—runs 200 Euros/kg. Of course, that could be one of the reasons that, unlike in other cities in Spain, the tapas are not free. Another reason to get a guide to take you to the best values.
At Las Teresas, waiters served thinly sliced Jamón Ibérico with Manchengo cheese on rustic bread. This, one of the most simple but best tapas in Seville, was paired with Manzanilla sherry, one of the driest sherries in the world, disclosed Elena. It had a very light mouthfeel and was not sweet, unlike the sherry I’d tasted in the US and France.
3. Ensaladilla de Ventescade Atun/Tuna with Russian Salad
While tasting our way through Seville, we stopped at Vineria San Telmo for Ensaladilla de Ventescade Atun and other fusion delights. I met the modern-gastro tapas bar owner and creator. His philosophy is “I do not understand how no one has come up with proclaiming ‘la tapa’ the alimentary expression of a lifestyle in which everything is tested, talks a lot, drinks intelligently and comes to the not easy conclusion that, in small doses, the world is beautiful.”
Another tip from Elena: This is one of the best places in Seville for wine selections. A tasty Sauci Blanco from Huelva was paired with the ingenious Tuna with Russian Salad.
4. Rabo del Toro/Oxtail Stew Influenced Tapas
Stew made from the bull’s tail started during the early days of bullfighting, and some even say the dish stems back to Roman times. In the 1800s, matadors would give the lesser “cuts” of the bull to admiring peasants, including the bull’s tail. I first tried Rabo del Toro—rolled a coating and fried—in Cordoba, where it is said to have been introduced. Vineria San Telmo’s version is wrapped like an egg roll and fried, really bringing out the rich flavors of one of the best tapas in Seville.
5. Best tapas in Seville: Pulma Iberica con Calabaza/Grilled Pulma Iberica Pork with Pumpkin
Although it’s difficult to choose a favorite, my favorite tapas of the night was the grilled Iberica pork on a slice of pumpkin, which tasted more like squash, and served with grilled arugula. Oh my! The delicious grilled meat was paired with a spicy red wine from Cadiz. The best tapas in Seville can be found at this Seville tapas bar!
While Devours Tours got its beginnings in Spain, it now leads fascinating foodie tours all over Europe. So be sure to check them out here for your next trip.
Devour Tours can show you an insider view in:
- San Sebastian
As is common in the travel industry, UNSTOPPABLE Stacey was provided with meals and other compensation for the purpose of review. While it has not influenced this review, the Arizona travel writer believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest.
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