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Enjoy Andalusia's unique dishes and recipes in Seville, one of the nicest cities in Spain. Have an impressive setting for a cooking class, overlooking the cathedral. You'll have a tapas tour in one of the most emblematic old Jewish quarters in Spain, Santa Cruz, and a trip to Aracena where you'll learn about the most expensive ham in the world, the Iberico ham. Visit Jerez and Cadiz, Sherry, boat trip, historic city, and a famous catering school. Have a trip to one of the most beautiful mountain ranges in Spain, Grazalema, and there, visit a traditional bakery, olive oil mill, and cheesemaker with local lunch and spectacular views.
You will be staying for five nights in a 3 or 4-star hotel in the center of Seville including breakfast and tax.
These properties lie in an unbeatable location. A delight for those that know how to live the life of liberty in all its splendor with fantastic private facilities in the best area of Seville.
This five-day tour will begin by immersing you in Seville's astonishing array of places to eat and drink. Tapas will be on the menu as your local tapas tour guide takes you to the hidden gems of Seville and shows you how the locals enjoy their food. Having had your first taste of the local cuisine, it's time to get involved as you visit the markets to choose fresh, local produce with the help of the experienced local chef.
A hands-on cooking class will teach you to transform your ingredients into traditional Spanish dishes. You'll savor the fruits of your labor on a terrace overlooking Seville's famous cathedral and finish off with a guided walking tour of the cathedral and historic quarters of the city.
Time to leave the bustle of the city and explore the surrounding countryside. Here, the very finest ingredients are produced, often using methods passed down from generation to generation. Iberico cured ham is one of the essential ingredients of Spanish cuisine and the mountainous region of Aracena produces some of the finest in the world.
You will visit the village of Jabugo to learn the secrets of this tasty delicacy. The next stop is the vineyards of Jerez, famous for producing sherry and brandy, and then a visit to the coastal fortress city of Cadiz, one of the most ancient cities of Southwest Europe. On to the Grazalema Nature Reserve where you will explore picturesque villages and visit local bakers, cheese makers, and an olive oil mill. You will learn firsthand how the essential products that flavor Spanish cuisine are made.
When you arrive in Seville, The Unique Traveller will meet you at either the airport or train station and show you to your accommodation in a typical Sevillian hotel. You'll have some time to yourself before you go out for a tapas tour. Tapas are an essential part of Spanish city life and a very different experience to eating in a sit down restaurant.
On an evening out, local people move from bar to bar eating and drinking standing up in an informal and lively atmosphere. They will show you an authentic tapas experience as the tapas tour guide is an expert on local gastronomy. They will reveal the very best bars in town, within the Jewish quarter, the Barrio Santa Cruz.
You'll taste a wide variety of meat, fish, and vegetable tapas that may include typical delicacies such as calamari (fried squid rings), jamón Iberico (thinly sliced cured ham with a delicious salty flavor), and patatas bravas (fried potato wedges in a spicy sauce) to name but a few. All to be washed down by delicious local wines of course!
The local chef will meet you at your hotel and take you to visit some of Seville's famous food markets. You will learn about the huge variety of fresh produce available in the markets and specialized stalls stocking cheeses, fresh fish and shellfish, meat and charcuterie, game, and even live snails. The chef will show you how to find the best ingredients to be used in the day's cooking class.
You'll take your fresh ingredients to your chef's private home where you'll enjoy a refreshing aperitif. Written copies of some typical Andalusian recipes will be provided for you. These could include Gazpacho, a deliciously tasty tomato soup served cold, Moorish-inspired dishes such as chicken cooked with almonds and saffron, or seafood dishes such as whole fish cooked in a salt crust with lemon oil.
With the hard work out of the way, you'll enjoy your lunch on the terrace overlooking Seville's famous cathedral and the historic quarter. Your meal will be accompanied by local red wine and fino sherry. Having gazed at the old city from above, you will finish the day with a walking tour of the historic streets, the cathedral itself, and the imposing Giralda tower. Moorish culture is evident in the architecture as you walk around the city and the guide will tell you stories from Seville's colorful history.
You will escape the city and take a day trip to the mountainous region of Sierra de Aracena to the northwest of Seville. The area is famous for producing some of the finest ham in the world. You will begin by visiting a farm where you will get to meet the Iberian pig and learn what makes this breed so special and how they are reared by local farmers.
The next step in the chain is the ham producer, and you'll be taking a tour of one of the most famous in the region. You will see for yourself how the ham is hung to cure and how the unique mountain climate of this area is essential to this process. The slicing of the ham is also very important and this will be demonstrated as you sample various different hams along with a glass of wine.
From here, you will visit the town of Aracena for a traditional lunch based around the local ham. Dishes may include Presa Iberica, a tender grilled pork shoulder, and you'll really taste how the acorns fed to the pigs give a beautifully sweet flavor. The pork will be accompanied by seasonal vegetables such as wild mushrooms, artichokes, and asparagus. Full of tasty food and mountain air, you will return to Seville for a good night's sleep.
After breakfast, you will leave for Jerez, a historic city famous for sherry, fine horses, and flamenco dancing. On the way, visit one of the region's best wine, sherry, and brandy producers. You will be taken on a guided tour of the vineyards and wineries that make up the estate and the entire making process will be explained by an expert guide who will explain the solera's key role in the aging process.
The vast bodegas stacked with barrels are an impressive sight and many barrels have also been signed by visiting actors, monarchs, and heads of state. The tour will be followed by a tasting session where you can try for yourself the wines, sherries, and brandies produced on the estate.
Next, you will board a catamaran for a boat trip through the picturesque bay of Cadiz. Cadiz is one of the most ancient cities of Western Europe and sits out on a peninsula, surrounded on almost all sides by the sea. You will sit down for a gourmet lunch at a renowned catering school, which has seen many Michelin-starred chefs pass through its doors.
Alternatively, you may eat at one of the celebrated restaurants in the old town of Cadiz. A superb tasting menu will allow you to try a selection of fine dishes and all courses will be paired with delicious wines.
In the afternoon, a guided tour of the old town of Cadiz, characterized by its narrow winding streets and wide plazas, will reveal a huge variety of architectural influences including Roman and Arab and a vast selection of tapas bars. You will also visit some of Cadiz's beautiful sandy beaches before returning to Seville.
After breakfast in your hotel, you will leave for Grazalema National Park, a UNESCO biosphere reserve. The park offers a spectacular variety of landscapes from high limestone peaks to lush green valleys and forests. Along with the incredible views and glimpses of local wildlife, you will be introduced to the variety of traditional ingredients produced by the people who live in this peaceful region.
The first stop is a traditional bakery, where bread has been made in exactly the same way for generations, even down to the wooden wheel which brings water to mix into the dough. You will be able to participate in the making of the bread and take your very own loaf away with you.
Next, you will go to the village of Grazalema to visit a local cheese maker. Grazalema has its very own type of cheese, Payoyo, a moist and flavorful cheese made with the milk of the local goat breed, Payoyo cheese is held in high esteem across the globe and has won many international awards.
You will continue to Zahara de la Sierra for a private visit to a traditional olive oil mill. Your guide will explain the process of making the finest quality extra virgin olive oil and you will be able to taste some of the different oils. You will take a walk through the white villages park and take in the breathtaking scenery before stopping for a gourmet lunch at the best restaurant in Zahara de la Sierra.
A delicious meal based on the local produce of Grazalema awaits you, including local lamb and venison, Payoyo goats cheese, homegrown vegetables, and acorn tarts.
In the afternoon, you will take a guided tour of Arcos de la Frontera, which sits atop a high sandstone ridge on the bank of the Guadalete River. You will be transported back in time as you explore the narrow, cobbled streets leading to a 15th-century castle and numerous churches which document the history of this fascinating town. You will then return to Seville.
By now, The Unique Traveller hopes you will be well acquainted with Seville's culinary culture, you can take away some recipes to share with friends and family and you have experienced some of the culinary treasures of the undiscovered Andalusia. You will return to the train station or airport by private transfer.
Welcome to Seville, a city renowned for its fascinating history and stunning architecture, but most of all, for its fine culinary tradition which is strongly influenced by its Moorish past. Come with The Unique Traveller and immerse yourself in the colors, flavors, and textures of Andalusian cuisine!
During this holiday, daily breakfast, a private guided tapas tour including food and drinks, a private hands-on cooking class including a visit to the food market, aperitif, food, and cooking preparation, and lunch with drinks, a full day private driven guided tour to Aracena/Jabugo including a visit to a ham producer and gourmet lunch, a full-day private driven guided tour to Jerez and Cadiz including a visit to a wine estate, a guided tour to Cadiz and gourmet lunch of a tasting menu in a reputable catering school or local restaurant, full-day private driven guided tour to Grazalema including visits to a traditional bakery, a cheesemaker, and olive oil mill, and guided tours of Zahara de la Sierra and Arcos de la Frontera and lunch in Zahara are all included.
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