Spain Chapitre
Madrid, November 23, 2019
Reinforcing the Spain 'brand'
" Members and their guests were looking forward to enjoying this most special night of the year "

The place chosen to celebrate our Madrid Chapitre this year was the Hostería del Student in the Parador de Alcalá de Henares. The restaurant dates from 1929, the date on which this second Parador was inaugurated.

NB. A parador in Spain and other Spanish-speaking countries is a kind of luxury hotel, usually located in a converted historic building such as a monastery or castle, or in a modern building with a panoramic view of a historic and monumental city. “Parar” means to stop, halt or stay.

Members and their guests were looking forward to enjoying this most special night of the year. Our Bailli Délégué Rosa Román opened with a Christmas-themed speech and then began the traditional ceremony of investiture.

Chevalier d'Honneur Rafael Ansón, President of the Royal Academy of Gastronomy, assisted in the ceremony by placing the ribbons around the neck of the inductees. New members of the Ordre Mondial des Gourmets Dégustateurs were welcomed by renowned winemaker Isabel Mijares, who is also a Chevalier d'Honneur.

Among other delicacies at the reception we enjoyed a Spanish cheese station as well as Iberian ham cut by Don Finardo of Don Finardo Altum. Accompanying the tasty delights were two Freixenet Cavas: Elyssia Pinot Noir and Elyssia Gran Cuvée Brut.

Each table was named after characters from books by Miguel del Cervantes. On reaching our seats for the dinner at each place setting was the new pin of the Bailliage of Spain as well as one for the Bailliage of Madrid.

José Valdearcos, Food and Beverage Director of the Parador de Alcalá de Henares and new Bailli of Madrid, welcomed the attendees detailed the courses we were going to enjoy.

MENU

Scallop salad with shrimp
tropical fruits, red fruits, chestnut vinaigrette

Monkfish, salmon and shrimp
violet potato parmentier, seafood sauce

Sorbet of blood oranges
with Tempranillo granita

Crispy suckling pig
sweet potato mash, red cabbage

Costrada de Alcalá
(a puff pastry strudel, filled with cream and meringue
and covered with chopped, grilled almonds)
 served with red fruit ice cream

WINES

Viña Mayor Verdejo 2018 D.O. Rueda - Bodegas Viña Mayor

Félix Martínez Cepas Viejas 2016
 D.O. Vinos de Madrid
Vinos Jeromín (a new associate of the Bailliage of Spain)

Dulce María 2019
D.O. Vinos de Madrid, Vinos Jeromín

At end of the dinner we could not miss the opportunity to hear Isabel Mijares’ thoughts on the food and wines for which she had nothing but praise, a view endorsed by all present.

With the service of coffee came gifts: a box of Barroso Marzipan, specially decorated and handmade for the Chaîne and a bottle of Cava Grandalla Gran Reserva 2011 from Jaume Giró i Giró

After dinner, Bailli Délégué Rosa expressed her appreciation to Food and Beverage Director José Valdearcos, Luis Carlos García Jiménez and his kitchen team, and to Beatriz Borra Zurdo and the service brigade.

Special thanks went to all those who had travelled to Madrid from other Bailliages as well as to all who brought a gift to deliver to the Menudos Corazones Foundation.

Rosa concluded by reassuring everyone that the Bailliage will continue working to continue the enjoyment of gastronomy by its members thus reinforcing that we are all part of the Spain “brand”.

Happy holidays to all … and vive la Chaîne!

César González
Vice-Conseiller Gastronomique
Bailliage of Madrid