"Sobremesa" - An important part of a Spanish lunch


(Current location: Iriomote, Okinawa :@)) :@)) ) #1

No English equivalent but it translates to something this: the time spent at the table after you’ve finished eating. Of course the food is important to food loving Spaniards but “sombremesa” is more.

This is one of the reasons I enjoy travelling and eating in countries with food-wine culture. Taking the time to enjoy one’s food and drink has become a luxury for some of us these days.


(John Hartley) #2

Back in my drinking days, I never really enjoyed restaurant lunches. There was always something to do afterwards - usually go back to work. Or alternatively, lunch would turn into one almighty piss-up which left you with the mother of all hangovers. Now I don’t drink (and am retired) I love lunch.

As for the Spanish lunch, paella is traditonally served at lunch not dinner. It’s an ideal food. It’s going to take a while to cook, so there’s time to sit down and nibble on a tapa or two. And paella should always be in large enough portions so you can have seconds. And then thirds, with the crusty bit on the bottom of the pan. Which leaves you so full, there’s little alternative than sitting there with your “cafe solo” until it’s digested a bit. What a great country!


(Current location: Iriomote, Okinawa :@)) :@)) ) #3

I read that paella is cooked by men. Seems like a perfect meal to spend some quality time with one’s family and friends.

Assados in south America are more or less the same. Takes many hours to cook different cuts of meat and during all this time the talking and bonding take place.

I had interesting discussions about good Spanish olive oils, olives, hams, wines etc with employees/servers in Spain. They were delighted to hear I prefer Spanish oils and olives. But it’s true, the oils and olives in Spain are exquisite.

Take the time and turn off the telly! Put down the phone!


(Denise) #4

Sobremesa is my favorite part of dinner but I didn’t know there was a word to describe it. Great to know!