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Recommendations for La Rioja region, Spain

I'll have to be this on the itinerary.

Jan 28, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

Recommendations for La Rioja region, Spain

Thanks very much!

Jan 28, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

Recommendations for La Rioja region, Spain

Thanks!

Jan 28, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

Recommendations for La Rioja region, Spain

Thanks RCC! These recommendations are amazing. How many days did you spend in La Rioja? We were planning on just 1 night en route from San Sebastian to Bilbao, but I'm wondering if maybe a couple days would be better.

Jan 28, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

One Week in and Around San Sebastian: Narrowing Down the Choices

I saw that website too. It looks like they also offer another class taught by a chef who's worked at Akelare. I'd love to hear how you liked the cooking class when you get back. We're heading to SS in Mid April. Thanks!

Jan 26, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

Recommendations for La Rioja region, Spain

Would appreciate any recommendations for wineries, dining and hotels in La Rioja. Planning on spending 1 day/ 1 night in the region on the way from Sen Sebastian to Bilbao and so am looking for the "greatest hits" given the brief visit.

Thanks,

Ilan

Jan 26, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

Pinchos In San Sebastian?

Thanks Poker!

Jan 26, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

One Week in and Around San Sebastian: Narrowing Down the Choices

Thanks again for the great info! Much appreciated!

Jan 26, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

One Week in and Around San Sebastian: Narrowing Down the Choices

Thanks for the great tips deadstroke86! I love foie and octopus! Re Pincho bars, hopefully this isn't a stupid question do they typically bring out hot Pinchos automatically to the bar or do you have to order these yourself (in which case is there a language barrier to ordering in English)?

Did you try using a Pincho tour service your first time or is this unecessary?

Do you have any recs for the Rioja region (wineries, dining and hotels)?

Lastly, wondering if anyone on
this thread has done a cooking class in San Sebastian they'd recommend?

Jan 26, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

One Week in and Around San Sebastian: Narrowing Down the Choices

Thanks!

Jan 26, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

Pinchos In San Sebastian?

Please give me your updated list of must-do Pincho bars/and what their specialties are (if you remember).

Also, is there any point to doing a Pincho tour with a guide (I heard of 2 companies that offer this- SS Food and todopintxos)- not much of a guided tour fan, but was wondering if any Chowhounders have used either of these groups and if its worth doing this just to get your feet wet.

Would also appreciate any recs for sit-down restaurants in San Sebastian or nearby towns, preferably authentic and moderately priced.

Also are all the high-end Michelin rated restaurants in San Sebastian molecular gastronomy/ experimental?

Thanks!

Jan 25, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal

One Week in and Around San Sebastian: Narrowing Down the Choices

Fellow Chowhounds- I would also appreciate any recommendations/ report out from people who've gone recently to Basque country.

We're spending about a week in Basque country in mid April and am feeling overwhelmed by too many things I'd like to see and dining options but not enough time. I was thinking about the following itinerary:

1. Fly in to Bilbao, drive to San Sebastian, spend 4-5 nights. Would appreciate top restaurant and pintxos bar recommendations. I am interested in trying maybe 2 or 3 of the Michelin rated high-end restaurants, but for the most part I want to go where locals go for really good authentic basque cuisine which doesn't cost a King's ransom. Am concerned that some of the world-renowned places may not live up to the hype.

2. We would like to sign up for a 1 day cooking class and would like recommendations (I understand that the Basque Culinary Institute in San Sebastian offers a class for example).

3. Are Hondarribia or Getaria worth staying a day in or are these destinations better as side trips from San Sebastian. Among other things we may want to try restaurants or Pintxos bars in those cities (such as Gran Sol in Hondarribia) and am wondering whether this would be too far to drive for dinner. Would you recommend going there for lunch instead.

4. Are most Pintxos bars also open at lunch or just dinner?

5. Can you recommend where to stay/ restaurants/ Pintxos and which wineries to visit in the Rioja region? We love red wines. We plan on spending only 1 day and 1 night there. Am currently booked at the Viura but am concerned that perhaps this may be too out of the way in terms of non-hotel dining options. Any thoughts/recommendations? Other possibilities would be to stay in Haro, Logrono or Laguardia which I think are more happening towns.

6. After Rioja, plan is to return to Bilbao for last day/night of vacation. Please give me restaurant/Pintxos recommendations for Bilbao as well.

Thanks!

Jan 23, 2013
TakeHumanBites in Spain/Portugal