A Spring Night in Seville – 11 April

In Photo, Spain, Travel 2011 on April 11, 2011 at 5:33 pm

Sitting at El Cordobes with half a bottle of house red and Gazpacho on it’s way . . .If there’s one thing I do well, regardless of location, language or budget, it’s eat good food and drink good wine.

With my blue gingham table cloth, an accordion player nearby and football on the outdoor television (even at nice restaurants they play the football), Seville seems to have put on the ritz just for me.

An old man with his white hair and cap keeps glancing over from the table next to me occasionally asking questions in stunted English. My waiter chats with his coworkers and smiles at me. As usual I think they are a bit perplexed by the lone American girl ordering dinner for only herself and her notepad – yet another occasion when I need a bit of Spanish so I Dan at least begin to justify the situation.

My gazpacho arrives, cool and creamy, and I garnish it with tomato, onion and red pepper. It is tart, making my taste buds clinch a bit with each spoonful, and, though I must admit it isn’t my favorite dish of all time, it is a cool refreshment, perfect for the end of a hot day spent strolling around Seville.

My waiter returns to take my empty bowl and asks if I would like something else. I order a seafood paella and wait patiently, nibbling at a bit of brea.

The old man turns to me again and asks me if this is my first time in Seville and if I like it.

“Yes. It’s beautiful, and everyone is so nice,” I answer truthfully.

“Welcome to Seville,” he smiles, and turns back to the football game.

The cook who I can see through the restaurant window rings a bell, and my waiter pulls my hot paella off the counter.

It arrives, yellow with saffron; loaded with mussels, prawns and scallops; garnished with coriander and lemon; and crowned with an oyster.

The rice is tender and the seafood is perfectly cooked. I slowly work my way through the pan, surprising them, I think, by finishing every last bite and sit contentedly with my last sips of wine.

Seville is a place meant for this- for walks in gardens and gentle exploration of tiny streets and alleys; for glasses of wine with tapas and Iberian ham; and for paella at dinner on a warm Spring night in an old town square, with an accordion player nearby, football on the TV, and an old Spaniard welcoming you to his home.

At the gardens in Reales Alcázares – the old palace in Seville

A peek down a very typical pedestrian street in the old part of the city.

My paella.


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