Ask anyone who’s been away from Seville for a while what they miss, and I guarantee that most of them will say breakfast.
I’ve been in the UK for 6 months, and while my anglo saxon start to the day was possibly a tad healthier (daily nutribullets – not for the fainthearted), what I really wanted was a tostada (toast) and a strong coffee to jet propel me through my day.
But here I am, back in Sevilla, and my fruity breakfast has all but been forgotten. And you know what, I can safely say, I’m never happier than when I’m pouring olive oil on a piece of lightly toasted bread.
So, here are 6 reasons why I love breakfast in Seville.
1. Eating breakfast out in Seville is ridiculously cheap
I remember the first time I ordered breakfast out in Seville, I had to double check I hadn’t got the price wrong. 2 Euros for a tostada with oil and tomato with a coffee. 8 years on, prices might have edged up by 20 centimos, but compared with anywhere else in Europe, it still feels tremendously affordable. Consequently, eating breakfast out in Seville is a universal experience welcoming everyone from hipsters to the elderly into her bosom.
2. Breakfast is deceptively tasty
It’s very hard to describe a Seville breakfast in English and do it any justice. Toasted bread covered with tomato, oil and cured ham doesn’t sound that exciting. But somehow there’s an alchemy that takes place when these ingredients are mixed together. The acidity of the tomato infuses the olive oil, in turn soaking into the barely toasted bread without becoming soggy. The bottom line is you’ve just got to try it to believe it.
3. Breakfast in Seville creates a sense of belonging
In a previous blog post giving tips on how to find your feet when you’re new in town, I recommended getting a local bar that is your regular breakfast haunt. Mine is Elotro Pozito on the Avenida de la Cruz Roja. I know that when I pop by for breakfast, Antonio and his daughter Sara will greet my like a long lost friend, making my coffee before I even get chance to order it, and generally make me feel all warm and gooey inside. When you’re new in Seville, or even if you’ve been there a while, feeling a connection can be difficult, and for me, breakfast has always been my conduit to feeling part of city life.
4. You get to pour Olive Oil on bread with gay abandon
Olive oil is pretty much universally considered a superfood; good for our hearts and high in antioxidants. In the UK, most people use it gingerly, much in part due to its historically high price. Not so in Seville. I remember the first time I saw this old fella smothering his toast in olive oil. It was literally swimming in the stuff. To honest, at the time I was horrified, but now I’m as free-handed as the rest of them. However, to get the full olive oil experience, you have to choose a bar that leaves the olive oil bottle with the customer, rather than preparing the tostada beforehand. And definitely avoid anywhere that gives you one measly plastic container of olive oil per breakfast – bad both for the environment and the whole glorious breakfast experience.
5. Gourmet breakfasts are also available
Today I popped by hipster haven La Jeronima by the Setas that started serving breakfast a couple of months ago. They’ve gone from zero to breakfast heroes, offering everything from pancakes, fruit, muesli, porridge, tostada (of course), and even the Brazilian favourite, Acai. This comes in handy as occasionally, it is possible to enter into some kind tostada saturation point where a change from toasted bread is needed.
6. Eat breakfast in and you’re missing a huge slice of Seville life
Whenever I have friends or family visiting who are staying somewhere in the city, I always say, ‘whatever you do, eat breakfast out.’
As tempting as it is to rack up the late nights on a trip to Seville, imbibing vast quantities of cheap wine and beer in the hundreds of tapas bars around town, don’t forget to treat your palate at the beginning of the day as well. For me it’s the way to truly transform your visit from a generic tourist visit into an authentic Seville experience.
Want to know which are my favourite breakfast spots – check out this blog.
Or watch this CNN video where I explain all about the daily breakfast ritual in Seville.