Spanish Pride vs. Spanish Wine
Stereotypes about Spanish are as lively and vivid as the multi-coloured landscape that paints the Iberian Peninsula. They are commonly exaggerations nevertheless somehow, in one way or another, they are true. Thus it is generally believed that Spaniards are someway impulsive, loud, vulnerable and very proud. They like fiestas and bull fights, do things with great relish and are very hospitable.
Talking about hospitality I can immediately refer to good examples of this generalization. The Spanish love long extended meals including a menu of three plates, wine and coffee. And the Spanish love to share this daily celebration with friends, family and with clients. Most of our clients and to become clients already know that time is what they will need most during their visit to Barcelona and to Montau de Sadurní. So be it, I can’t say that I had a hard time getting used to this amusing habit. However I do have a hard time getting used to the descent of the HORECA sector.
There was a time when Spain’s gastronomy did well and when proud Spaniards included their decent house wines into their simple though well done menus. Nostalgic Spaniards would remember the respectable and appreciated vino de la casa that back then in the 70ies used to accompany their fabadas. The boom of the 90ies not only elated the entire Spanish gastronomic industry but also the people’s attitudes. Spain seemed to have overcome the complex of inferiority and began to launch new multifaceted and expensive wines. New barrels, new styles, elegant wines, innovative cuvees, everything was nouveau, shiny and great. The Spanish cuisine rose up and showed the rest of the world that Spain not only does things with relish but also with greatness and professionalism.
However the Spanish El Dorado, founded on mortgages, loans and borrowings, is beginning to crack in spite of being on top of the culinary world. Only few can claim to have done everything right while the rest is suffering the consequences of a collective overestimation. Spanish restaurants barley sustain and the unpleasant consequence is that the cheapest vino de la casa is back on the card. Included into the well known menu, like it has always been, but worse than ever without dignity and without pride.
What happened to the Spanish pride? What used to be a pillar of Spanish culture has been degraded into a mere stereotype for if it was true that the Spanish are such proud people as generally assumed, we maybe wouldn’t retrograde and need to drink bad wines in public places.