Tag Archives: San Sebastian Food

New York Times Features Basque Pintxo Kit created by San Sebastian Food

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We are delighted to announce that the New York Times has featured our latest product, the Pintxo (tapas) Kit in today’s New York Times dining section.

San Sebastian Food's Pintxo Kit as featured in the New York TimesHere is the feature written by Florence Fabircant:

“The pintxo, a quick bite (pronounced PEEN-cho), is the Basque country’s contribution to the tapas bar. Now San Sebastián Food, a company based in Spain that sells food products and arranges culinary tours of the Basque region, has introduced a kit for preparing and serving them. You get two slate serving boards, ceramic bowls and glasses; four ceramic spoons; and a bunch of wooden skewers, all designed for various tidbits like garlic shrimp, potato tortilla and anchovies skewered with olives and peppers. There is also a recipe booklet, an apron and a small skillet.”

The pinxto kit from San Sebastián Food is $97 (subject to variation based on the exchange rate with the euro), plus $29.99 shipping: sansebastianfood.com.

To read the article in full, please click here to go to the New York Times.

San Sebastian Food Studio Launch – 80 guests in tourism and gastronomy come together to share common goal

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Welcome chalk board as guests arrive for the opening

Welcome chalk board as guests arrive for the opening

Last night, our studio in San Sebastian’s old town was officially launched with a special event attended by over 80 professionals in the gastronomy and tourism sector.  From government officials to hotel owners and the tourism office, the event was great fun and of course featured excellent local food and wine from the region.

We are delighted to report that Monday 16th April has marked the inauguration of our studio in San Sebastian’s old town on Calle Aldamar, No 30.

We received overwhelming support from invited guests and were delighted that over 80 people attended the event including Basque Government official Javier López.  Other guests included many of San Sebastian’s hotel owners and receptionists from hotels such as the Maria Cristina, Astoria7, Villa Soro, Hotel Codina, Hotel Niza and Hotel Parma.

STUDIO OFFERS ONE-STOP-SHOP FOR CULINARY & WINE TOURISTS

Jon Warren, San Sebastian Food founder gave a short presentation on the studio which he believes can be the number 1 place to visit for anybody interested in gastronomy and wine while visiting San Sebastian.

Standing on a chair, due to the huge number of guests who attended, Jon spoke in Spanish explaining his vision for the studio.

“I have no doubt that San Sebastian is one of the greatest places in the world to enjoy authentic gastronomy.  But, finding it is not always easy.  Our goal for San Sebastian Food is to offer guests access to these culinary experiences”, he passionately explained.

Jon also used the opportunity to thank all the partners who collaborate with his business followed by a toast to a successful and continued collaboration together in the future.

The San Sebastian Food signature walnut!  One for everyone who attended!

The San Sebastian Food signature walnut! One for everyone who attended!

TOURISM OFFICE SHOWS ITS SUPPORT

It was fantastic to see the full team from San Sebastian’s tourism office attend the event, led by Gorka Oiartzabal, departmental head of customer service.   In addition, Kristina from the Central de Reservas of the tourism office also attended with her colleague Noelia.  This offered a great chance to get to know them personally and to discuss opportunities for the future.

TASTING EXPERIENCES HAVE STARTED

The studio not only offers a meeting point for those interested in gastronomy but also a place where people can enjoy a range of tasting experiences which has already begun with a daily wine tasting at 4pm.  Further innovative experiences will be launched over the coming weeks.  For more information, please visit our website www.sansebastianfood.com.

EARLY GUEST COMMENTS

“Muchas gracias por hacernos partícipes de una velada tan agradable. Sois un equipo fantástico. Os deseamos toda la suerte del mundo.” Lurdes Azpiazu Aizpiolea

“You did put on a good show!  Nice people and everyone enjoyed it! Well done” Turlough Quinn, Chef

Note: For all press enquiries, please call +34 943 421 143 or email us using our website contact us form.    Click here for our press release

Guests from our street, here the jewellery shop opposite!

Guests from our street, here the jewellery shop opposite!

Nicole and Eli, culinary guide, with delicious cured iberian ham

Nicole and Eli, culinary guide, with delicious cured iberian ham

Other guests at the event including Bildu political party deputy mayor Amaia Esnariaga

Other guests at the event including Bildu political party deputy mayor Amaia Esnariaga

Arkene from Zaporejai hand slicing delicious iberian ham, acorn fed of course!

Arkene from Zaporejai hand slicing delicious iberian ham, acorn fed of course!

Javier from Casa Aramedia with incredible artisan-chocolates-for-everyone!

Javier from Casa Aramedia with incredible artisan-chocolates-for-everyone!

A group shot of guests at the end of the evening.

A group shot of guests at the end of the evening.

Conde Nast Traveller write up Pintxos in ‘A Life in Miniature’

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conde nast travellerConde Nast’s February 2012 edition features a 5-page article entitled ‘A Life in Miniature’.   As author Paul Richardson mentions in his article, he met Jon by chance and came into our studio in the heart of the old town while he was visiting the city researching the article:

“And then in one of those moments of serendipity that are the reason one is still in love with travel, I bumped into Jon Warren.  Jon runs a small business called San Sebastian Food, offering visitors a privieged view of a city whose gastronomic excellences can sometimes be a little hard to get a handle on.”

The article goes on to explain more about what the company San Sebastian Food offers visitors, enphasizing the access to specialist knowledge and recommending our services:

“Jon’s tailormade tours of the finest pintxos bars not only cut out the possible disappointment factor inherent in going it alone, they also cut to the chase with the little-known, atmospheric down-home places, the upscale avant-garde places, and the speciality pintxos that only locals know about.”

Paul further talks about Jon and mentions some of the tips he was able to learn which improved his experience.

“From Jon I learned several things I didnt know before.”  Most importantly, that the really classy pintxos are often not to be found on the bar top, which acts as a kind of shop window showing punters what the kitchen can do, but on the menu chalked up behind the bar….”

“Armed with this sage advice, I set out with renewed enthusiasm,” says Paul following his meeting with Jon.

The article finishes by recommending San Sebastian Food in the information panel with full details of our pintxo tour, studio address and website details.

When Jon first arrived in San Sebastian, he read a book by Paul Richardson called ‘A Late Dinner’. It was an true inspiration to him when he arrived in Spain.  It is therefore particularly special and important to him that four years later, Paul has now written about him and San Sebastian Food!

“I thought I knew all about San Sebastian pintxos – but Jon and his team gave me a whole new insight into the best new bars, the right things to order in the right places, and a host of insider pintxo tips. I owe him one!” Paul Richardson.

About Paul Richardson

Paul Richardson is a British food and travel writer and journalist, very closely associated with Spain and its culture. Richardson spent his childhood in the English county of Hampshire, which was the start of a strong relationship with the rural world that he has maintained until today. He studied at Cambridge University and worked as a journalist in a range of communications media in London, such as the magazines, Taste and Wine Magazine, and the The Evening Standardnewspaper.

In 1991 he decided to leave Great Britain and to live in Spain. He spent the whole of the 1990s in the inland part of the island of Ibiza (Balearic Islands), enjoying the countryside and rural life. In 2000 he acquired a small estate-farm in the province of Cáceres (in the region of Extremadura, in the centre-west of Spain, bordering with Portugal) where he continues to live in a rural environment. He is the author of various books, like A Late Dinner. Discovering the Food of Spain, and publishes articles about food and travel in Spain in publications such as The Guardian and Spain Gourmetour.

San Sebastian Food – December Newsletter

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WELCOME TO OUR NEWSLETTER
Welcome!  Each month we bring you all the latest news from our busy food and wine studio in the heart of San Sebastian’s old town.

This December edition announces our brand new short breaks for 2012. If you’re still stuck for a Christmas present for the foodie in your life, choose from just €270 for a two-day Spa & cooking course weekend.

Or book our featured three-day Gourmet Escape which includes a hands-on cooking class, an amazing three-Michelin star dinner at Arzak and three-night’s accommodation at the luxurious hotel Villa Soro.

PERFECT PINTXOS THIS CHRISTMAS
LATEST PRESS: THE TELEGRAPH
The Telegraph’s Coverage of San Sebastian Food

Xanthe Clay says “San Sebastian offers such a range of gastronomic delights, it’s bewildering. Unless, that is you have a guide – and they don’t come better than Jon Warren at San Sebastian Food.  It’s like having a best friend who’s also a foodie local at your side….read more

IN BRIEF – NEWS & REVIEWS
NEW CULINARY GUIDE

We’re delighted to introduce Eli Susperregui, our talented and utterly charming new culinary guide! Born in San Sebastian, Eli brings a huge amount of knowledge and experience to the team.  She’s already been busy with three days of guiding a film crew from World Kitchen.

DARINA ALLEN – IRELANDS CELEBRITY CHEF

Darina Allen, the energetic and unstoppable chef, author, instructor and owner of the famous Ballymaloe cookery school visited us in November. It was a pleasure to spend time with Darina and her husband Tim as we darted around the old town sampling everything from cheeses to iberico hams and smoked anchovies!

JENNY TO RECCE PORTUGAL/RIBERA WINE ROUTE
Jenny Siddall, our specialist wine guide is going to be off in early 2012 researching new wine routes.  The dynamic tour will be taking guests on a authentic, behind-the-scenes wine adventure over 5-days sampling, learning and enjoying the best of Portugal & Spain.  Limited to 12 guests, contact us to be added to our waiting list. Tour date estimated Sept/Oct 2012.

Join our facebook page for more news!

HAPPY CHRISTMAS & THANK YOU
Lastly, a big thank you to all our fantastic guests this year!  We have so enjoyed meeting you and we look forward to staying in touch.

Wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and successful New Year.

From all the team at San Sebastian Food

PS Haven’t written your Trip Advisor review yet? It’s not too late!  Simply click here to add your review.

Want to help us grow!? Join us on Facebook!

For more information please visit
SANSEBASTIANFOOD.COM

Unique ‘Discover the Basque Country’ tour – 4 events to choose from (6th to 9th July)

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San Fermin - Thursday 7th July

A family prepares for the day's fiesta in the traditional costume of red and white

It is almost July and many are looking forward to the summer fiestas this region is famous for, among which the San Fermin Festival in Pamplona. For those who are looking for something more authentic and intimate, food guide Jon Warren and acclaimed author Paddy Woodworth have put their shoulders under a unique 5-day-tour, the program of which is built around the special San Fermin ceremonies of the picturesque Pyrenean mountain village of Lesaka.

This unique experience will now be broken down into modules, which means that anyone interested will be able to take part, even those who cannot take 5 days off to submerge themselves in Basque culture and culinary enjoyment. Just choose one of the organised events on a day you are free to join us!

Jon Warren, Food guide and founder of the culinary tour company San Sebastian Food

Jon Warren, Food guide and founder of the culinary tour company San Sebastian Food

The San Fermin Fiesta of Lesaka begins on Wednesday 6th July with fireworks at 12.00. Those who join cultural expert Paddy Woodworth and local historian Rafael Eneterreaga that day to discover the beautifully preserved village’s hidden corners and secret narratives, will also have the chance to taste pintxos paired with wines in some of Lesaka’s infamous twenty-two bars.

The best day to fully experience the colourful festive ceremonies of the tiny village is no doubt Thursday 7th July, when the ezpata danza (sword dance) along the narrow stone banks of the Onin stream will take your breath away. You will immediately see why the village’s nickname, ‘Little Venice’, is a perfect one. This day also includes lunch in a local restaurant in between the rolling green Basque hills.

Friday 8th July then is ideal for those who long to travel deep into the ‘Pirineos Atlánticos’ and explore remote, beautiful and historic villages, to discover rich culture and a magnificent winery.  Further details are available by clicking here San Sebastian Food.

If you cannot make it on one of these wonderful trips into the heart of mountainous Basque Country but are keen to learn more about Basque history, culture and politics, don’t miss the engaging talk by Paddy Woodworth on Saturday evening 9th July, complete with wine tasting and pintxos. Woodworth has been writing about the Basque Country since 1978, for publications ranging from the Irish Times to the International Herald Tribune, and for broadcasters including the BBC, and has been asked to give presentations at prestigious universities such as Harvard.

All these four tours, except the last one, offer a whole day of ultimate mix between history and cuisine, and take you back to San Sebastian at the end of the tour. On Friday 8th July a 3-Michelin star dinner can be arranged for you as well at one of the top restaurants of the city, Arzak, now rated 8th in the world rankings.

These Basque Country discovery tours, organised with expert Paddy Woodworth, are a great opportunity for those who have been longing to experience something completely different, to learn about the history of a long independent and very strong community, and at the same time taste the flavours of world famous gastronomy!

For further information, visit San Sebastian Food and request a tour brochure.

Alternatively, you can download their full tour brochure by clicking here.  For those that would like details of their modular tour program, they have been put below.

Cultural expert Paddy Woodworth who will lead the series of tours along with Jon Warren

Cultural expert Paddy Woodworth who will lead the series of tours along with Jon Warren

Event 1: Behind the Scenes at a Basque Fiesta

Date: Wednesday 6th July

Title: Behind the Scenes at a Basque Fiesta

Timing: 08.00 – 14.30

Description: We travel deep into the heart of the Basque Country to the little known Pyrenean mountain village of Lesaka with marvelously preserved architecture dating back to the 14th century. A local historian, Rafael Eneterreaga, will join cultural expert Paddy Woodworth in showing us Lesaka’s hidden corners and secret narratives.

At precisely 12.00, the official start of the San Fermin fiesta will be signaled with multiple fireworks from the balcony of the town hall.  Having taken in the atmosphere, we will meet with the town mayor. After a drink and pintxos (tapas) in some of Lesaka’s infamous twenty-two bars, we will return to San Sebastian.

Includes: Private transport, guided tour of Lesaka with Cultural expert Paddy Woodworth and local historian, Rafael Eneterreaga, Pintxos (tapas) lunch with wines, fiesta scarf, photos from the event, 18% vat.

Meeting point and time: 08.00 sharp, San Sebastian Food offices – Calle Aldamar, 30 (See map for directions)

Price: €185 per person.  Maximum 15 guests.

Event 2: San Fermin Day in Lesaka

Date: Thursday 7th July

Title: San Fermin Day in Lesaka

Timing: 08.00 – 16.00 (full day)

Description: Arriving in Lesaka, we enjoy breakfast in one of the village’s many bars whilst young men dressed in bright red costumes gather in the main plaza. The day is focused around experiencing the very special ceremonies of Lesaka’s San Fermin fiesta.  This includes a breathtaking ezpata danza (sword dance) along the narrow stone banks of the Onin stream, one of the features which have given the village the nickname of ‘Little Venice’.

After the main fiesta is coming to a close, we travel deep into rolling Basque hills for a special lunch at a local restaurant packed with atmosphere.

Includes: San Fermin day in Lesaka, rustic gourmet lunch with wines, fiesta scarf, photos from the event, private transport, 18% vat.

Meeting point and time: 08.00 sharp, San Sebastian Food offices – Calle Aldamar, 30 (See map for directions)

Price: €235 per person.  Maximum 15 guests.

Event 3: Cultural & Culinary tour through Basque valleys

Date: Friday 8th July

Title: Cultural & Culinary tour through Basque valleys

Timing: 08.00 – 17.00 (full day)

Description: We take a very special journey deep into the ‘Pirineos Atlánticos’, the foothills of the Pyrenees and explore remote, beautiful and historic villages including Saint-Etienne-de-Baigorri, Bideray, Itxassou and Ainhoa, uncovering rich culture and a magnificent winery.

Optional: In the evening, invited guests are welcomed for a 3-Michelin star dinner at restaurant Arzak* for their full tasting menu with selected wines.  (*Rated 8th in the world rankings)

Includes: Scenic tour of French Basque villages with cultural commentary and insight, winery visit, lunch with wines, photos from the event, private transport, 18% vat.

Meeting point and time: 08.00 sharp, San Sebastian Food offices – Calle Aldamar, 30 (See map for directions)

Price: €235 per person (€395 per person including 3-Michelin star dinner).  Maximum 15 guests.

Event 4: Basque history, culture and politics

Date: Saturday 9th July

Title: Basque history, culture and politics

Timing: 19.00 – 22.30

Description: Engaging talk by Paddy Woodworth based on presentations on Basque history, culture and politics he has given at Harvard and the London School of Economics.

Includes: Presentation by Paddy Woodworth, questions and answer session, wine tasting interval followed by pintxos (tapas) and wines, 18% vat.

Meeting point and time: 18.45 for 19.00, San Sebastian Food offices – Calle Aldamar, 30 (See map for directions)

Price: €95 per person.  Maximum 25 guests.

About San Sebastian Food

Food is a journey. Let us share ours with you.  Feel part of the food culture of San Sebastián, Northern Spain.  Using local knowledge and contacts, we provide an intimate experience of the region’s gastronomy and wine. Our team is made up of food and wine lovers, chefs, wine experts, cultural experts, artisan producers and local shopkeepers.  We are knowledgeable, dedicated and love what we do.

About Paddy Woodworth – Basque cultural expert

Paddy Woodworth has been writing about the Basque Country since 1978, for publications ranging from the Irish Times to the International Herald Tribune and Vanity Fair, and for broadcasters including the BBC, RTE, and National Public Radio in the US. His first book, ‘Dirty War, Clean Hands’, was described by Franco biographer Paul Preston as “one of the most important books ever published about post-Franco Spain.”

For further information or to make a reservation, please contact Jon Warren (jon@sansebastianfood.com) or by phone +34 634 759 503.  All events start and end at our offices in the Old Town of San Sebastián.

Jon and Paddy are back for Lesaka 2011

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We’re back! As we slowly emerge from winter, we’ve been working hard  to release our brand new 2011 brochure for this summer’s specially extended 5 day ‘Discover The Basque Country’ tour.  After last year’s success, Paddy and Jon are already regularly chatting about this year’s tour which will accept a maximum of 15 guests and promises to be our best yet!

With an extra day’s touring, extra luxurious rooms and a special Michelin star dinner experience, anybody that missed out last year will be in for a truly adventurous cultural and culinary 5 days. You can see last year’s guest comments San Sebastian Food Cultural Adventures

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Discover The Basque Country 2011 - Reserve your limited places today with San Sebastian Food

Tour dates – Tuesday 5th July to Saturday 9th July

If you can’t make this year’s tour but would be interested to find out about future tours, sign up for our newsletters by simply filling in your email address on our homepage http://www.sansebastianfood.com/

Tour Brochure and further details – To see our brand new brochure, click here

Our Blog – a new weekly post!

Paddy and Jon are committed to sharing all the behind-the-scenes news and happenings with you!  So, we will be making a regular weekly blog right here on EITB!   Looking forward to keep in touch!

Until next time,

Jon and the team at San Sebastian Food

http://www.sansebastianfood.com/

Gourmet Gift Experience Vouchers

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We are delighted to announce the launch of our exclusive, new gift box vouchers, the perfect gourmet gift this Christmas. Our gift experience vouchers come in a beautiful box complete with your own personalised itinerary, recipe cards, behind-the-scenes information on San Sebastian and much more.

To download a fact file on the vouchers, click here.  Order today by calling Jon on (UK) +44 203 286 77 77, (USA) +1 917 675 4894 (Ireland) +353 (0) 1 442 8435 or by email jon@sansebastianfood.com.  See our website for further information.  For press enquiries, please see our press release by clicking here

JON’S WEEKEND DIARY

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I’ve had a very busy few days so am relieved to find a few minutes to report to you all a snippet behind the scenes at San Sebastian Food from last weekend.

Friday 23rd April - Friday early evening was a private tour for a gastronome from Denmark, now the favoured destination for people wishing to try Noma, the latest number 1 restaurant in the world (http://www.theworlds50best.com/awards/1-50-winners).  There followed my second pintxo tour of the evening at 9.30pm for an English couple as part of a Michelin Star gourmet weekend.  Jovial chats were had with the bar staff especially in Goiz Argi as I re-ordered for the 2nd time in one night their fabulous Brocheta de gambas with refreshing glasses of Txakoli (local white wine grown in nearby Getaria)

Latest batch of Idiazabal Sheep's Cheese at the farm on Saturday morning

Latest batch of Idiazabal Sheep's Cheese at the farm on Saturday morning

Saturday 24th April – Beautiful weather for a special countryside tour and I never tire of visiting, high in the hills, the hard working couple Imna and Mikel who kindly show my guests around their Idiazabal cheese farm.  I have huge respect and admiration for the intense work which goes into producing their finest quality cheese.

I bought an extra cheese for Turlough, an Irish chef and close friend of mine who lives here and who has worked in many of San Sebastián’s finest Michelin star restaurants including Zuberoa, Arberlaitz and recently Martín Berasategui in Lasarte.  He wants to take some cheese back for his Mum’s 60th birthday party next week. We then went on to the market in Tolosa, it was good but not as fun as other weeks, perhaps people were at the cider fiesta in Errenteria.

Being such great weather, we quickly headed off to Getaria, a fishing village not far from San Sebastián for a whole monkfish, grilled on the bbq and a delicious, simple salad.  I had to order some Kokotxas (the meat from the chin of Hake), cooked in a parsley sauce called Salsa Verde.  They were sublime but I think my guests weren’t so keen as I appeared to eat the lion’s share!

Still busy, busy with bookings, I managed to squeeze in a pintxo tour for a couple of Japanese guests staying at the Maria Cristina Hotel between 6.30pm and 9pm.  There was little English spoken between us but with thumbs up and rubbing of tummies, we all enjoyed some fantastic pintxos.  It was fun going to different bars I hadnt visited for a while and trying new pintxos on their menus.  I was surprised just how much my Japanese guests ate and drank and dont think my accountant (nor my brother who acts as a business guru for me) would be very pleased with the net profit, oh well!

Jon with martin B at Lasarte 24th april 2010

Jon with Martín Berasategui at his 3 Michelin Star restaurant

Then for the big dinner of the year so far, a night at Martin Berasategui in Lasarte, the three-Michelin star restaurant (position 33 in the world). It was a fabulous evening and I owe great thanks (and a steady supply of bellota jamón) to my cousin Mark who so kindly treated us all. Unfortunately my food photography is still of a very amateur level despite Damian from Go Spain giving me a crash course in the back of a taxi last week. So no photos of the food other than this one of me and Martín taken by Nicole after dinner!

Well, Sunday 25th April morning was another beautiful day, blue skies and warm breeze from the South and after picking up transport, it was time to drive over to the Maria Cristina Hotel to meet some American guests from Atlanta for a bespoke tour. We had plenty of time to chat en route which I always enjoy and took the old Igueldo track road back to San Sebastián by 2.30pm.

I then joined friends for Des’s birthday lunch at the new Kursaal restaurant Ni Neu (‘me and myself’ in English or ‘yo mismo’ in Spanish).  The menu, for 39 € including wine, was pretty good and sitting outside with views of the river, mountains as well as the sea was relaxing (the Torrijas dessert, a type of French Toast was fabulous).

Martín wine tasting rz

Martín, sommelier serving the first wines of the evening in the Rekondo private cellars

By 7.00pm it was time for San Sebastian Food’s inaugural wine tasting and tour at Restaurant Rekondo.  I was very excited because its such a special event and it went without a hitch.  Txomin, the owner and wine lover who has single handedly selected what is certainly the most important wine collection in Spain, is the epitomy of modesty.   With waves of his hands and an appreciative smile, he shyly rebuffs our compliments and tries his hardest to persuade us that his daughter, Edurne and Martín (their sommelier) are the ones to thank.  It was a fantastic experience and I’m already looking forward to returning this Sunday for the next tasting so now I need to find some bookings!

With that in mind, we now have our first bookings under our belts for the Discover The Basque Country Tour, 5th – 8th July – 12 places to go!