Thursday, October 29, 2009


Been trying to get my paws on percebes for years. Those barnacles form NorthEast/Basque Spain that look like dinosaurs toes and allegedly cost lives in their harvesting. Finally saw some at local rough-neck Tapas bar and gave them a try. All I can say is that they were curiously pleasant....slightly sweet, thin fleshy tubes that you pull out of the papery barnacle shell with your teeth. I was mildly enjoying them thinking that as a curious barsnack they had a certain novelty appeal. Then the barman gave me the bill for €9. What the *?"!!*? Coupled with my Prawn fiasco the other day I'm beginning to feel like I'm getting the guiri (foreigner) rip off. But I checked the prices and they are the going rate in both cases. I fully understand and appreciate the ethos of foraging for food as a survival mechanism in all parts of the world, and i am aware that this practice has led to some of the worlds most outstanding gastronomic achievements. However, all I can say is if someone offers you a small plate of percebes for €9 you'd be better off going home and marinating a few rubber bands in some seawater and adding a tiny bit of grit every few mouthfulls. I bet you could do that for less than €2.!!!

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