Join Notes from Vivace in this final of the four part write-up of his journey through Sevilla, Spain as he explores it’s historical streets without a smartphone and attempts to find it’s local music scene. For Part I (Getting to Sevilla) click here . For Part II (Sightseeing in Sevilla) click here. For Part III (Music in Sevilla) click here.
Food in Spain
As mentioned in previous vacation blogs, I am a vegetarian. I’m told Spain has great food and I would agree, but my choices were limited to the non-meat section of the menus.
Here’s my ranking of the restaurants I ate at (I’ll leave Dominoes off the list and the café at the bus station – though if you’re looking to eat for cheap the Estacion Autobuses at Plaza de Armas Café has food at a reasonable price.)
Best restaurant was at Cordoba, Restaurante Almaltea. The focus was on Italian. I was the first customer of the day. I was in heaven. It isn’t fully vegetarian, but it had a nice selection of vegetarian options.
Almanara (Alameda de Hercules) in Sevilla ranks second. I ate there once and really wanted to go back (referenced in part 3 of this Sevilla column). It is fully vegetarian.
Centro Ecologico Gaia was the closest to my hotel. I’d also rank it highly. The first time I went to the restaurant I was told they were closing for their siesta.
Habanita is a question mark for me. It isn’t purely vegetarian so it may rank higher for those who eat meat. It was nearly impossible to find. It is near Plaza Alfalfa and I spent more than a few moments walking through the streets near the plaza (map in hand, of course), trying to find it – seriously, walking down every possible street near the plaza. I did eventually come across it via this small side street. The food was basic (see menu below). And when I went into the bathroom to use the facilities, I noticed that the soap dispenser was empty. Empty!?! Agh . . . I hope the folks preparing the food have their own private restroom.
Unlike my Prague vacation (check out my blog series from 2010) where I ate well for less than $10 and sometimes for less than $5, a decent meal for me in Spain was between $15 and $18. I was always served bread and olives, which carried an approximate $2 service fee. I assumed this was their way of a tip. I read before hand that no one tips in Spain so I never left a tip. Perhaps the waiters were cursing me as I left, but that is the info I pulled from the Internet.
Success 3. My final full day in Sevilla was spent checking out some of the final tourist spots on my checklist. When evening arrived, it was time to give it one more try at catching the local music scene. I’d caught a cultural event via flamenco. At Teatro Central, I saw some Anglo-Saxon performers. Now I wanted to try and catch an actual local Sevilla band. Looking through the Lonely Planet guide book, I decided on a venue called La Imiperdible located in the Plaza San Antonio de Pauda. Off I went. Either I was looking in the wrong place (which is highly possible considering how difficult it is to find certain places in Sevilla) or it was shut down. I suspect it was shut down because I know I was in the correct plaza.
Hmm, I decided I’d press onwards to Alameda de Hercules and take a look around to see if I could see anything going on there.
I went up and down the long plaza. I heard music from the second floor of a building, but after looking up at the balcony I determined it was a birthday party. I eventually arrived at Fun Club. Would you know it, the gates were open and there stood a trio of girls waiting in line. There was a poster on the gate. Hey, some live music.
Now at this point it was 10 p.m. and I got this brief wave of hesitation hit me. I nearly backed down. I got worried regarding my sleep. I was planning on waking up at 4:30 a.m. to catch my 7 a.m. flight. But the moment of hesitation was only brief as I started to feel a little stupid for hesitating about a 10 p.m. show when I normally don’t arrive till 10 p.m. at various Los Angeles music venues. And anyways, I needed to use the bathroom. I waited outside for about 20 minutes before they let us in at around 10:10 p.m. At the gate, I saw a trio of friends hanging out so I decided to ask them a question just to make sure there was in fact live music for the night and not some DJ. I was told yes.
Fun Club. Think Silverlake Lounge, but slightly larger. Also visualize the smallest urinals known to mankind. I would have taken a photo except for the fact that I felt it would make me look like a pervert if some guy walked into the bathroom while I was taking the photo.
The first band on stage, Tercer Hombre, looked like a new band. They had a camera girl along to video their set. They gave us a thirty minute set. After their set, I was approached by the band along with the video girl. They asked me in Spanish if I’d send them the photos I’d taken. I mentioned I spoke only English, so one of them asked the question in English. I said gladly and was provided an e-mail address. Once I got back to California I did send them the photos.
There was about a thirty minute break (I was starting to get this feeling that thirty minutes between sets were standard) (more…)
“Any NY transplants who blew their noses the next day would instantly be taken back to Randall’s Island [Lollapalooza] circa 1994-1997.”
FYF: The Experience: With it looking like The Detour Fest will never be returning, I find myself becoming more and more protective of the FYF Fest. Much has been written about the logistical snafus of Saturday’s 7th Annual FYF Fest and I’m here to weigh in.. Common complaints about water prices, set delays, and ungodly long lines have probably done enough to scare people off for next year, and that’s a damn shame. Let me try and put things into perspective for some people who are losing their shit. For $20 I was able to see a slew of my current favorite artists on a beautiful day in Downtown LA, mere miles from my house. Sure the lines were long, but with a little logic and some help from your wingmen and women you could work through the hiccups. Someone in your group wants a cheese-steak and you want beer? Expecting to be able to do both is unrealistic at any festival - Break off into groups and pick a spot to meet back up at. Also, don’t expect to rely on your cell phones or texts. You gotta work these things old school style. Maybe FYF is catching more grief because it was 90 degrees and we were sitting in a glorified dirt farm. It made many people miserable, but it made me feel a sense of nostalgia for the old days of the traveling Lollapalooza. Any NY transplants who blew their noses the next day would instantly be taken back to Randall’s Island circa 1994-1997. If anything, I wish it were not an all ages show because the longest lines of the day were for the beer tents and the VIP Cha Cha tent, but I understand the kids need their music too.
THE GROWLERS and CULTS
from left to right : Growlers (pictured left and center) and Cults (pictured right)
VETIVER and WARPAINT
from left to right: Vetiver (pictured top left top) and Warpaint
TITUS ANDRONICUS and WAVVES