Monday, January 30, 2012


Tarragona is Sitges meets Girona.  It's a small city set on a rocky hill above the sea, about an hour's train ride south of Barcelona. 

Here's a photo essay of a Sunday spent meandering in Tarragona.

Long history. Iberians, Carthaginians, Romans. Called Tarraco back in the day, it was the capital of Rome's eastern Iberian province. It was supposedly a very populated, elegant, cultured city during the Roman Empire. 

We toured the medieval walled upper part, complete with ampitheatre, cathedral and plazas built around pieces of old Roman walls. 

We also toured La Casa de Vermut. Vermouth seems to be the drink of choice in this city as it was advertised on placards outside all the cafes.  

We picked a place on the plaza near the cathedral which served homemade vermouth and pinchos. 
The bottles, one dark and one white, were on the table, along with a bottle of club soda. We were served giant fishbowl wine glasses with huge ice cubes that slapped you in the face when you tilted back, fresh orange slices, and a dropper full of salty, fishy, dyed-green olive juice.  We could fill up on vermouth and create our drinks as we wished, and when it was time to pay, they just eyeballed how much of the bottles we had drank. 

The freshest of anchovies drizzled in balsamic vinegar.  Mmm...

We also came across an old junk market outside the cathedral. Interesting juxtapositions of old and really old.

I don't like the way this guy is looking at me:

Cute little martini cafe:

A little reminder of ancient Rome in between the traditional Spanish plazas:

A walk along the rocky coast to enjoy the sunset: