good food + awesome travel & occasional odd bits

San Sebastian

After  few relaxing days spent in the Loire Valley, the plan was to travel south by train toward Lyon and perhaps down to Provence. That didn’t happen. Instead, we took a huge detour and decided to go to Spain. That’s how we travel. By our whims. We hopped the train to San Sebastian. When we arrived, it was nighttime, cold, windy, and rainy. And, we didn’t have a hotel lined up. Our adventure had definitely begun as we left the train station only to find the car rental was closed, there was no sign of taxis anywhere, and it was pouring.

We passed by this modern and very cool looking hotel and decided to see if there were any rooms available. Luckily for us, not only did we get a room, but it came with complimentary breakfast! There was a price to pay, though. Our room in this cinema themed hotel was the Melanie Griffith room. At least we got a good laugh from it everytime we came back into the room. The hotel lounge (above) was super comfortable and had an extensive library including tons of movies on dvd.

calamari, carmelized onions, red bellpepper sauce

After the long train ride we were both exhausted and hungry. We headed for the center of town to find something to eat. Being that it was off season and many restaurants close for a vacation, pickings were slim. We came across Astelena, one of the few places that was lively even at the late hour when we stumbled in. This placed turned out to be awesome! Everything we ordered was simply delicious. I couldn’t believe it. The flavors and textures were right on and the tapas were truly inventive.  We ordered plate after plate and I even had some dishes twice. The tapas sized portions make it perfect to order a variety of  items and an opportunity to try almost everything.

garlic shrimp

 

chorizo, bellpepper, onion

 

shrimp wrapped in kataifi

 

seared bonito and black sesame seeds

 

fried muchrooms, jamon, shishito

If you enjoyed this post as much as we enjoyed feasting at Astelena, there’s more to come as we eat our way through San Sebastian and make time for sightseeing  in between meals.

 

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