Thursday, September 25, 2008

Homesick for Spain--Again.

I just watched the first episode of the new PBS series Spain--On the Road Again.

Can somebody please book me a ticket to Madrid ASAP? I miss it, and I was only there a few months ago.

The concept behind the series was that Mario Batali and Mark Bittman decided to eat their way through Spain. Then Gwyneth Paltrow decided to join the roadtrip. On the philosophy that three was a difficult number, they invited Spanish actress Claudia Bassols to join the crew. The result, if the first episode is any indication, is a wonderful glimpse into the sights, sounds, smells, and--most importantly--taste of Spain.

Their gastronomic journey through Spain shows how seriously the Spanish take their food and their wine, and it's a fabulous introduction to the connections between what Spaniards eat and the land and regional traditions of this country.

Don't watch it if you're hungry or thirsty, though. I got through the episode with some olives, Spanish chorizo, and a chunk of Manchego, all washed down with the last of my Twisted Oak River of Skulls Mourvedre. But most important, don't miss any of this series. You will soon be able to get the companion book, but until then visit their website and blog, set your DVRs to record the latest episode, and check out the recipes. Get some Spanish wine into the house, and sit back and treat yourself to some armchair travel during the next few weeks.

Full disclosure: watching this program may make you homesick for Spain, even if you haven't been there yet. Viewer discretion is advised.

6 comments:

Taster B said...

Hey, Dr. Debs--I watched the program too! Fortunately, we'd just gotten back from a huge greek dinner so I was fine with the role of passive observer. I had no idea "GP" was so fluent in Spanish...

Orion Slayer said...

If we can't afford a plane ticket, maybe the next best thing would be to visit a local Spanish restaurant. I've been wanting to try one in Sacramento for a while. Your post gives me extra incentive to try it out!

ryan said...

Always welcome back! We have plenty of wine and Jamon waiting for you. I hope This program can show a few more what they are missing! :)

Terence said...

But you have to look at Mario, yes? Just lost appetite.

casacaudill said...

I've long loved Mario Batali so I knew I had to watch when I found out about the show. I went in not really knowing how I felt about Paltrow but she grew on me. I'll be watching every episode from here on out and definitely using the book as a basis for a future trip to Spain.

Anonymous said...

Yes, this series is terrific! It made me so homesick for Spain (and I am not even from there!) that we are going next summer...I can't wait! I also did not know GP was so fluent in Spanish! As a Spanish teacher, good for her!!! I am impressed! I just recorded another episode to watch with my hubby who has never been to Spain! Enjoy all!