Located in the northern part of the Iberian peninsula between Castille and León, the historic city of Burgos is often overlooked by tourists and Spaniards alike. In 2013, the city was named the 'Gastronomic Capital of Spain'. An impressive accolade considering the level of competition in this food obsessed country.
The province of Burgos, that surrounds the city, has a unique climate and ecosystem which results in excellent raw ingredients and delicious local specialities that are eaten all over the Iberian Peninsula. The most famous of these is Morcilla de Burgos, a rich pig blood sausage that is rather like a black pudding filled with onions, herbs and rice. The province is also known for Queso de Burgos, a white soft and lightly flavoured cheese.
Not only have the Burgaleses perfected the art of producing food, they have also perfected the art of eating it. There is a remarkable range of tapas bars and restaurants in the city offering a wide selection of memorable dishes.
Where to eat
Casa Ojeda: Since 1912, this venue has been an institution in the city. Don't miss their red beans with sausage (chorizo), the local blood sausage (morcilla) and bacon, blood sausage with peppers, or sirloin hearts with foie and raspberry vinegar.
El Mesón del Cid: Another popular spot located in a 15th-century house where you’ll find a selection of traditional dishes such as roast lamb, or artichokes with clams in green sauce.
El 24 de la Paloma: This is divided into two areas, '22' dedicated to tapas and wines, and '24' for full restaurant service. Both areas present exquisite dishes, from elaborate tapas to creative dishes, accompanied by an excellent wine list. A great option if you’re looking for something a little different.
The Ribera del Duero, near Burgos, was named ‘Best Wine Region of the World in 2012’ by Wine Star Awards. With cool nights, sunny days and a high altitude this area produces award winning wines with fantastic flavour.
The Bodegas Portia, with its Norman Foster designed winery is just a 40 minute drive south from Burgos. To the east of the city the Bodegas Señorío de Nava grows Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo and Garnacha (Grenache) grapes. Both offer tastings to the public.
What to see
Those looking to walk off lunch or work up an appetite for dinner should explore historic Burgos. The city's charming pedestrian streets, 19th-century facades and porticoes are best explored on foot. The UNESCO listed gothic Burgos Cathedral is well worth a visit, as is the romantic Paseo del Espolón.
Burgos cathedral, Flickr/Mario Martí