Road-trip to Andalusia part 2
I have been told we really need to check out Granada from a lot of our friends. We left our cozy yet chilly campground and made our way into town. (If you are just now joining us you can begin The Road-trip through Spain with Part 1 here)
The streets are not exactly parking friendly so we found an underground garage in the city center, got a map of the town and set off for the day. We took Bisque Kitt’s dog stroller thinking this would be a good idea. It was not. You can read about that adventure in Terri-Lynn’s blog here.
We began our walk at the Cathedral where the car park was nearby and made our way towards Plaza Nueva and followed the river up Carrera Del Darro. We reached the Paseo De Los Tristes, a wide pedestrian area. The trees were in bloom and we could see Alhambra across the river.
We then started climbing up the steep cobble stone streets to the top of the Albaicin neighborhood. This is the old Arab quarter with great views of the town and Alhambra. I should mention this is a whirlwind road-trip that was very spontaneous. We could not get into Alhambra as it was sold out for the next few days which is fine as we do not usually pay to see “sites”. However, maybe if we plan a future visit it would be worth the effort and the expense, the entrance fee was $14 Euro.
The old Arab quarter is basically all souvenir shops and restaurants these days. Our plan was to stay and have lunch but being a very touristy town prices here are much more expensive than what we are used to. Seems like the average price for a glass of wine and a tapa is $2.50 Euro which is more then twice what we are accustomed to paying. So that and the congested streets made us decide to say goodbye to Granada and make our way towards the summit of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. The night before from our camp site we saw what appeared to be car lights coming down the mountain, so of course we thought it was a good idea to check it out, plus we could see snow at the top.
It was lunch time and we were hungry. On the way up the mountain we found the small village Cenes De La Vega that looked much more our style so we set off looking for lunch.
The Menu Del Dia is a typical and usually very large way to have lunch in Spain. A multi course meal that comes with wine and desert.
We chose Restaurante Las Rejas as it had a nice local feel to it, sunny tables and good sounding menu options for $9 Euro each.
We both started with a mixed seafood salad. There was a large amount of Octopus (Pulpo) in there as well as shrimp. We both agreed it was excellent. Salads here tend to have a very simple dressing, just Olive oil and red wine vinegar.
Terri-Lynn had the Pollo Plancha, grilled chicken. The food in Spain tends to be very simple without a large amount of ingredients, herbs or spices. Also, it seems like every dish comes with fries. Terri-Lynn said she really enjoyed it.
I had the Meluza Andaluza. Merluza, or Hake has become my new favorite white fish, especially the loin. It is firm, light in flavor and flaky. This was deep fried with a basic red sauce. Once again, a very simple preparation but the quality of the products and freshness is very good in Spain. So even though the flavors may not exactly be complex the overall dish was quite enjoyable.
For Dessert Terri-Lynn had the Flan and I had a chocolate mousse. Some menus start out with a salad before the first course, others make the salad the first course. Some menus will include a whole bottle of wine for two people, some only one glass. This one only came with a glass so we each ordered an additional glass of wine. So the two menus and two additional glasses of wine came out to $23 Euro, not too bad. Usually you also get an after dinner liqueur with the check, but not here. We are still close enough to the touristy area of Granada so that is to be expected.
After lunch we had two choices, continue up the hill towards the summit, or start making our way to the next destination, Ronda. We chose to move on so we could arrive early enough to find our next camp site for the night.