Our second night in Sevilla was probably our favorite night of the trip. We really wanted to see flamenco, but were a bit weary of getting stuck in a cheesy tourist experience. While walking around during the day, we wandered into the Casa de la Memoria, a beautiful cultural center dedicated to flamenco. That night we returned to see “Fragua Flamenca” with Almudena Serrano, Oscar de los Reyes, and Sebastian Cruz. The seating area is pretty small, so the show feels very intimate. I’m not an artsy, musical person, and I don’t really know how to describe it properly, so I won’t really try. But damn. It was amazing. Tears running down our faces amazing. There was a man playing beautiful classical guitar, a male singer (who happened to be fucking incredible) and two very beautiful, talented dancers: one male and one female. Please, if you are in Sevilla, go and see a performance there. Cameras were only allowed during the last 5 minutes, so here are a couple pictures.
After this memorable experience, we poured out onto the cobblestone streets of Sevilla, off to find dinner. It was already 22:00 by this point, but that’s about dinner time in Spain. I had scoured the interwebs earlier, trying to find a good place for our last dinner in Sevilla. Luckily, a Chowhound post led me to Azotea (we went to the Zaragoza location, check my TripAdvisor review for more details). The restaurant was full, but luckily two people were just leaving their perches at the bar, so we swooped in and sat down. The bartender greeted us, took our order for red wine, and handed us menus…in Spanish. “OK, we can do this,” said TDL, trying to motivate us. (You can see that TDL and I are too stubborn for our own good, and would rather struggle, pretending we are Spanish -probably fooling no one- than ask for English menus.) After a couple minutes of struggling, the owner came over and saved the day. He provided us with English menus and an extensive rundown of the specials and his favorites. He and his brother own the two Azotea restaurants; they are from Sevilla, but the brother we were talking with lived in San Diego for several years and is married to an American. He was charming, fun and, along with the bartender, made our night extra-memorable (despite A LOT of red wine). In addition to incredible service, the food at Azotea is phenomenal. Everything was perfection. Traditional Spanish tapas with a very modern, fun twist, I’d say. Bonus: the price was very reasonable! Take it from here, iphone pictures (click to see full-size):
(Not pictured- beef cheeks, several other rounds of wine)
I would go to Spain for one night (I hate flying, so this is saying a lot) just to have that meal again. Right now, I am jealous of myself because I got to eat all that deliciousness. I think by the end of it, I was so drunk and happy I would have kissed the owner and bartender. But we got into a cab instead and I proceeded to speak my best Spanish ever.
Back at the hotel, we took pictures of the beautiful night sky and had drunken travel revelations. One of them being, when we travel, we need to be less concerned with looking like tourists. I mean, we’re speaking English, it’s kind of obvious. We need to own it more and be okay with asking for help. We need to not be afraid to speak muddled Portuguese and not hesitate to liberally use “más despacio por favor” in Spanish conversations. I’m sure this sounds obvious, but it was an important realization for us and it helped immensely the rest of the trip.
Next up, we drive our hung-over asses back to Portugal.