One day I went to Spain to live there as an Erasmus experience and I got to know better the Spanish culture. One thing they have that I love is tapas. I think it’s a nice way to spend time with friends and people you love, trying food and eating small portions while enjoying your company.
I heard about Rota de Tapas (in English is like Tapas’ Route) few weeks ago and I couldn’t miss it. I went on a Sunday with my boyfriend and after some discusion of ideas we decided to go to 5 places to eat.
The tapas were cheap, each one was 3€ with a beer. This Rota was organized by Estrella Damn and the restaurants had to buy the beer in order to take part of the route. Their tapas show the identity of each restaurant. It’s like a sample of what they regularly offer to costumers. In some restaurants the owners told me that they enjoyed the idea because they could show to people their food and some people from Braga went to their places for the first time, it was a way to create relationships with more customers. That was also my case with some of the restaurants. I never went there, so now I know better what they offer and their prices.
This Rota was available from 13th May until 5th June. Some of the restaurants liked the fact that Braga Romana was also happening because they had more customers and some restaurants said the opposite.
What I loved most about this was the idea of using tapas, because even though it’s not something from Portuguese culture is something cheap and easy to eat and it’s a good way to spend time with friends. The restaurants had free maps for us to take and that map had a list of every tapa and restaurant with the schedule, that was useful. I believe it was a good strategy to use the tapas to show what the restaurants offer, their identity. The people at Palatu Taperia, Pregaria da Sé and Pedralva were so nice that I want to return there and try other things. They asked us if everything was okay, if we liked the tapa and also were open to discuss the Rota with me (like who organized it, how they got to be part of it, the idea behind their tapa and if the Rota was being successful for them).
What I didn’t like about the Rota was the way the map was designed, because the restaurants were shown on the opposite side of the street they were. And I’m not bad at reading maps, my father is a geographer, I learn from him. The New Door’s Arch (Arco da Porta Nova) was badly placed, to give you an example. I knew where things were, but a tourist doesn’t. Most of the restaurants were closed on Sundays, why? They lost a great opportunity, I think. We have to adapt ourselves to our costumers and their free time. I liked all tapas except in A Loja dos Pastéis de Chaves, it was very spicy (and I’m tolerant, I can’t imagine for someone who isn’t). For the first Rota, I believe it worked pretty well, but I only knew about this through a friend, not through media or social networks. Some friends of mine didn’t know about this until I said I went to eat tapas.
Pregaria da Sé