My favourite cheese dish in Spain was also the simplest. On the recommendation of a friend who comes from Baiona, we headed one Friday night to the town of Sabaris to try Fidalgo. Actually we headed there earlier in the day to try and go for lunch but as it is the off season, it was closed, so we had to come back later.
Fidalgo is a small wine bar and jamonerie, full of large hanging hind legs, and a lovely cheese and charcuterie cabinet. Opening at 7.30pm, by 8pm It was jammed with families, couples, pre-going out groups of friends and post-run joggers on Friday night, making me wish this bar was around the corner. Once we started looking at the menu, we worked out that we really needed to be there in a group, rather than just to two of us, as we had to skip the large plates of mixed meats for other bits and pieces.
The reason for this post was the manchego and anchovies. Manchego comes from the La Mancha region and is another Spanish cheese protected by Denominacion de Origen (DO). Made from sheep’s milk cheese, a key requirement is that it is aged for a period of at least 60 days in natural caves.
The cheese we ate was served in firm wedges (a bit like parmesan). It was a little sharp and a little crumbly in the mouth, splintering off with the saltiness of the anchovies. It’s a dish I’m going to repeat at home.
I should also mention that Fidalgo’s pulpo a la gallega was my favourite of the trip – served as extra thin slices, coated in sharp paprika and a full bodied, rich and gooey olive oil, and served with lots of warm crusty bread.
If you end up in this part of the world, you should definitely go.
Fidalgo, AVENIDA JULIÁN VALVERDE, 79 (SABARIS) 36393 BAIONA (Pontevedra) (no website)