With London getting set for the start of the Olympic Games the streets are buzzing and while some people are escaping the capital for some sunshine, for those of us who can’t or actually don’t want to, next weekend a piece of sunny Spain is coming to the South Bank.
Now in its fifth year, the popular Tapas Fantasticas festival celebrates the produce of the Rioja region in the north-east of Spain, renowned for its great tasting food and wine.
“Tapas Fantasticas takes its inspiration from the renowned tapas crawl in the heart of Rioja; Spain’s most famous wine region,” say the organisers Wines Of Rioja. “Every weekend, Calle Laurel in the region’s capital fills with people wandering from bar to bar, enjoying a different tapa, or pincho as they are known locally, in each, accompanied by a glass of Rioja. We wanted to recreate this tradition of ‘tapas bar-hopping’ within our own capital.”
There are around 40 vibrant wine and tapas stalls so you can taste a spectacular variety of red, white and rosé wines from some of Rioja’s most famous vineyards and eat mouth-watering tapas from London’s best Spanish restaurants.
“Eleven of London’s top tapas bars including José, Ibérica, Copita, and Capote y Toros to name but a few will be cooking up delicious authentic Spanish tapas to taste with your Rioja – whatever your taste there’s bound to be a Rioja wine or tapa to match!”
Last year’s event saw 15,000 food and wine lovers descend on Potters Fields Park by Tower Bridge over the course of the two-day festival, and this year promises to be bigger and better than ever, with activities including live cookery demonstrations by famed Spanish chef José Pizarro and tasting workshops with wine experts Olly Smith and Susy Atkins where you can learn more about Rioja and discover what tickles your taste buds!
“We are excited to be working with wine experts Olly Smith and Susy Atkins, who will be hosting fun and informal wine walks and workshops to share their expertise and enlighten visitors on what to look out for when tasting Rioja wines. With London in the spotlight this summer, Rioja Tapas Fantasticas is perfectly located in the shadow of the iconic Tower Bridge.”
A free festival, visitors can purchase a wine glass on entry with tokens which can be exchanged for samples of top class Rioja wines. Visitors will also be able to purchase tapas dishes and glasses of wine from all exhibiting restaurants and wineries throughout the day. The festival is at Potters Fields Park on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th July 2012. For more information and to sign up to the wine seminars and wine walks please visit www.riojatapasfantasticas.co.