This guest post is by Elisa, author of the Vegan Happy blog. She is a vegan who has lived in five different European countries over the last seven years.
Well, after six years of living in Granada, an amazing city in the south of Spain, Andalusia, I would like to offer some tips for vegans. It has taken me a long time to find the right places to eat.
So, here we are…..
First I have to give you some advice: once you are in Granada, it’s really difficult to leave! Believe me! It’s a city of musicians, culture, artists, sun, mountains and good energy….
Granada it a gorgeous city, but there are not many vegan options. In Madrid or Barcelona, it’s not a big problem to find vegan food. However, in Granada, it’s still a bit hard to find places to eat. Many people here think that “Jamon” (the famous Spanish ham) is not meat! And many people call themselves vegetarian but they eat fish or ham. If you’re in a bar and ask for something without meat, it’s probable that they will bring you fish or some food with pieces of ham because they don’t think it’s meat. But still…it’s not so bad!
Granada is famous for TAPAS! Most people know what tapas are, small plates of food similar to appetizers. But what some people don’t know is that you get them for free whenever you buy a beverage. YES, that’s right….for F R E E! That’s Granada!
In Granada you will pay around €1.80 Euros for a “normal” glass of beer (tubo) … wait, I did not say a pint of beer … a normal glass is around half a pint. Then there is a smaller size (caña), which is around €1.50 Euros. Glasses of red or white wine (vino tinto/blanco) are around €2.50 Euros …. OK, now with the “crisis” things are more expensive. Before it was better!!!!
But that is what people do here. Most nights you go out to have many small beers and small dishes (tapas). In Granada, this is the way you have dinner or lunch.
Now, the question….How can you get vegan tapas in Granada????
Vegan Options at Typical Granada Bars
First, I must tell you about bars in general. Most importantly, the staff should be nice and give you something because it’s your right! If you are going around the city and want to drink something in a tourist bar, it’s better not to ask for “vegan tapas” because most people won’t understand. If you start to ask for something without this and that, and that….you’ll be told that there’s just nothing. It’s better to ask if there are any tapas with some potato (without mayonnaise), a tomato salad, or at least some chips or olives.
Andalusian Tapas Dishes
Some places have a printed tapas menu, which is really helpfully for vegans. Many places (but not every where) offer typical Andalusian tapas dishes like:
berenjenas con miel – fried aubergine with molasses
pimiento del pardon – a small kind of pepper, some are hot and some not
gazpacho – a cold Spanish tomato-based raw vegetable soup
salmorejo – a cream consisting of tomato and bread
ajo blaco – a soup made from bread, crushed almonds, garlic, water, olive
oil, salt and sometimes vinegar. It is usually served with grapes or slices of melon.
For gazpacho, salmorejo and ajo blaco, be sure to ask to have them without eggs or ham, sometimes they put them on top
Some of the bars that I’d like to recommend to you are:
They are a typical Andalusian bar in the center of the Albaycin (the amazing old Arabic neighborhood) and nice people work there.
Ask for a tapa of “patatas brava” (wedge potatoes with hot sauce)
This is another really typical Andalusian bar, it’s really small and a bit difficult to find. The barman is working there since always.
Ask for a tapa of “berenjena con miel de caña” and a “gaspacho” to drink in summer.
A nice tapas bar. There are two in the city. I recommend this place because you can ask for a tapas “rosquilla de setas” (ask to have it without chees), it’s a small sandwich full of mushroom.
This is a Moroccan tapas bar. It has this Arabic feel, and they have a tapas menu where you can find some vegan tapas too like hummus, falafel (ask for it without mayonnaise), vegetable couscous, and noodles with almonds. A nice place!
Vegan Options at “Special” Bars in Granada
Each year, more bars are becoming sensible to the needs of vegetarian and vegans guests. There are bars where you can directly ask for a vegan tapas like:
Mundo Manila Ecobar – They carry vegans tapas from El Piano
Plaza de las Descalzas 3, 18009
Tel: +34 958 210 312
Callejon del ave Maria (Realejo)
Babel Word Fusion Bar – They know what vegans are
Calle Elvira 40
Bella Kurva – They offer some Japanese vegan tapas
Calle San Jeronimo 19
And I hope you will find more places on your holiday.
Vegetarian Restaurant in Granada
Unfortunately, in Granada there is just one vegetarian restaurant. The restaurant is called Raices and they offer some dishes for vegans too but not a lot, and just a few I really appreciate. They don’t offer vegan desserts. But it’s the only vegetarian restaurant in the city!
Avenida Pablo Picasso 30
Vegan Take Away in Granada
El Piano is a vegan take away spot in Granada and it’s a place I would really recommend. They offer many dishes and they are all 100% vegan and gluten free. They are a shop too and they try to promote vegan ethics. Most of the workers are from the United Kingdom or USA. They have a vegan food menu and there are some seats at the bar where you can eat too.
Location 1: Calle Gran Capitán, 7 bajo,
Location 2: 3 Plaza Realejo
Now you can see…a vegan can survive in Granada and it’s not as difficult as some may say. I mean, you have to use some more fantasy and the good humor that all vegans have! And you’ll enjoy this wonderful city that is Granada….
(just some opinions and tips from a vegan living in Granada to all vegans in the world)