Secret Spots in Sevilla

Seville has all of the comforts and amenities of a modern city. This includes an array of culinary enjoyments available from dawn until late at night. It would take months and possibly years to discover all of the tucked away places a foodie would love. I only scratched the surface, but it’s certainly a delectable one.

Lets start with the café. I am a café fiend. In a beautiful little café I could happily sit all day, reading, writing, and chatting. At one point when I was living in York, a baristas in one of the many cute cafes in York commented that he thought I might actually move in. Though said light-heartedly, I’m still not sure whether or not I should have taken that as a hint that they wanted me gone.

I am a bit of a Starbucks addict, maybe because my father always took me there when I was little and let me eat the whipped cream off of his coffee. I know it has nowhere near the best coffee, so spare me the lecture. For me it is more of a comfort spot. So I was very pleased that Seville was crammed with them. But I am always on the look out for nice bespoke cafes. My favourite was the eclectic Red House Cafe tucked away on a side street. The décor is rustic but comforting. And most importantly, they made the best chocolate cake I have ever had in my life. Considering it was either gluten-free or vegan or both (I can’t quite remember which) this is pretty impressive. Another not so secret favourite spot of mine is the Hotel Alfonso XIII. I love it because of the decor more than anything, though I can confirm that the cheesecake is very good. The hotel is beautiful inside and it has a wonderful atmosphere, perfect to just sit and enjoy a coffee and a cake. Alternatively, you can have a drink in the Bar Americano or enjoy a meal in one of the restaurants. They occasionally even have live jazz.

Gelato, like Starbucks, is everywhere. Though not as good as Italian gelato, it is still perfect for a warm day. One of the best is supposedly La Fiorentina a little ways off of the Plaza Nueva. Unfortunately, I cannot confirm this because despite going three times, it was closed every single time I went. If you have better luck than I, let me know how it is. However, I can tell you what to avoid. There are two major gelateria chains in Seville. The first, Amaretto, is all over Europe. It is probably the best gelato I have had from a large ice cream chain so if you are desperate and no family run gelaterias are available, it is an enjoyable alternative. But avoid La Abuela. I have no idea if this chain extends beyond Seville but in Seville they are everywhere. They have good gelato, but they have a bad habit of ripping off tourists. They are also almost all serviced by grumpy, unfriendly women. You have been warned.

For the main event, my favourite restaurant is Albarama. Its small space in the Plaza de San Francisco is modern and chic and the waiters are friendly which is always a bonus. If you are tired of traditional Spanish tapas, they do an exciting array of more unique tapas as well as the more traditional ones, all of which are oh so good. The tapas portions are quite small which means you can guiltlessly order your favourites several times over or fill yourself by trying as much as you can. I personally would go for the second option.

Above: The Hotel Alfonso XIII

Photograph by Savannah Hayes

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