This is an indispensable tool for those who want to follow, in English, what really goes on in the world of Spanish and Portuguese wines – lively, informative and, most important, first-hand, on-the-scene knowledge!
Victor de la Serna

Tag Archives: garlic

Friday Feature Photo: Portuguese Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato

Photographer: Ricardo Bernardo Capture Date: March 5, 2011 Location: Seminário de Faro, Faro, Portugal About: The photo was taken during an ALFA, Associação Livre Fotógrafos do Algarve, workshop which demonstrated the preparation of two traditional Portuguese dishes: Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato and Bacalhau à Conde da Guarda, a recipe from Mestre João Ribeiro. This particular photo of Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato consists of: clams (Ruditapes decussatus), locally known as Amêijoa-boa, with coriander, garlic, a shot of white wine, olive oil and a dash of salt and pepper. Desktop Wallpaper: To download this image, simply right-click on the image and select “save link as” or “save target as”, then select the preferred location on your computer to save the photo. Purchase: Please contact us directly […]

Dieting Food Lover Style: A Portuguese Guide to Healthy Food

I have to admit that I don’t jump right into a rigorous diet on the first day of the New Year. I spend most of January convincing myself that it’s time to cut back on the carbs and desserts and to hit the gym. I ease my way into a new food routine, the one I had before the first signs of the holiday season in America burst into supermarkets in the form of giant turkeys. Like with any type of withdrawal, it’s not easy to recover from nearly three months of intense gorging. I take baby steps towards recovery, and by February, I’m ready to get back to a moderate way of eating. I say moderate, because I’m not […]

Cooking up a Farewell Feast with Moscatel

Parting is such sweet sorrow. That Bard really knew what he was talking about, didn’t he? It’s this way with Gabriella and Ryan’s announcement that Catavino is saying goodbye. My emotions were mixed at hearing the news. Initially, I was disappointed that I wouldn’t have my monthly outpouring of a favorite Portuguese dish, wine or region that I’m used to sharing with all of you through the lens of an expat living in America. And I thought of how much I would miss your comments at the end of my stories; the inspirations, the exchanges, the camaraderie of like-mindedness. Then that other saying sunk in: the only constant is change. And it sounds like Gabriella and Ryan’s change of plans […]

Peixe In Portugal: The Numerous and Delicious Varieties of Portuguese Fish

In my very first article with Catavino, I described an amazing experience lunching on fresh grilled fish along the Portuguese coast, an event I eagerly anticipated for weeks. Today, almost two years after writing that article, I can still say that I dine out on peixe grelhado every weekend, and I look forward to it as much, if not more, than I did before. Clearly, I was hooked from the start! The concept of grilling fresh fish whole in sea salt is a foreign concept to many of us in the States. Culturally, most North Americans have been brainwashed to cringe at the thought of eating anything that looks like it did when it was alive, fish included. But once […]

Traditional Catalan Dish: Spanish Sausage, Spinach and Garbanzo Beans

Spain is synonymous with cured Jamon Iberico, olives and sharp Manchego cheese; but let’s not forget that it’s also the birthplace of a wide variety of sausages. Since the dawn of time, Spaniards have mastered the art of using, salt, spices and fresh air to preserve and cure their meats; and as centuries passed, their creativity blossomed, instigating an array of chorizos, salchichones, morcillas, butifarras, etc. to be eaten alone or with a traditional regional dish. Last night, with my husband (and chef) in London, I needed to don my (erm..his) apron and fashion a few tapas dishes for an impromptu dinner. And although I’m not a die-hard carnivore, I altered my fleshy green side to incorporate some rich Spanish […]

Catavino is Back in Spain: The Customs, Culture and Cuisine of India

Sitting at the keyboard with henna painted fingers, my clothing infused with rich cumin, cardamom and ginger aromas, I am at a loss as to how to put into words this experience. Having arrived last Sunday night by plane, we came to Delhi in delirious anticipation for Ryan’s cousin’s wedding. A Minnesota born and bred musician, he had met his Indian bride in an African drumming assemble at Macalester and chose to follow the Bengali marriage traditions by meticulously organizing a five day wedding celebration in New Delhi, India. But no matter how much we had read on the city, and regardless of how many people we chatted with regarding the local customs and rituals, nothing could have prepared us […]

Winter Announces the Traditional Calçot and Cava Festival

Live in Cataluña for any length of time, and inevitably, you’ll experience a Calçotada. What’s a Calçotada? Well, I can tell you that it’s not a Catalan dance, a side-splitting headache, or a type of monster that hides under the bed and eats small children. Nope. It’s an enormous sweet onion festival! Each year when the boughs of the almond trees are thick with delicate pink blossoms, the calçot season, lasting only six weeks, gets into full swing. Calçots (pronounced kalsot), a cross between leeks and spring onions, are considered as integral of an ingredient within the Catalan culture as is butifarra (Catalan sausage) and tomatoes spread over toasted baguette drizzled with olive oil and garlic. In appearance, they are […]