We almost just arrived home after our yearly visit at my mother-in-laws-house in Basque Country. This year (just like last year) we took a few days of trying awesome veggie eateries. This time we had a closer look at the veggie pintxos of Bilbao, a completely vegan “pastelería” (cake shop) and a vegan bar serving lots of Japanese inspired goodies and much more!
A few words need to be said about Pintxos. Pintxo is the Basque version of tapa and is a snack often served on a small piece of bread with a skewer stuck into it. Pintxos are normally eaten as a snack at the bars before lunch where people meet and hang out. You may find pintxos at the bars even after this hour but maybe not the same selection of them. As a vegan or vegetarian you may feel a bit left out when your friends try one yummy pintxo after the other and when all of them contain either meat, fish or seafood. To our big joy we have recently discovered that in Bilbao (the biggest city in Basque Country) there are several bars that are either specialized in veggie pintxos or have a few high quality pintxos in their selection. Below we list all the places that we tried this year and that we think are worth a visit.
- Txarloska – a vegan pastelería (cake shop) that sells delicious looking cakes! This is the first shop we have ever been to that only sells cakes completely free from ingredients with animal origin. Txarloska is a very sweet little shop with the most incredible cakes and the most friendly staff. The owner also had a lot of yummy suggestions of where to have more vegan culinary experiences in the city. Obviously we tried some of cakes and I can tell you that one of them was the best cake I have ever had!
- K2 – is a bar situated in the old part of Bilbao (just like Txarloska) in a street called Somera. In this street you will find more than one bar that has vegan pintxos. A girl working at K2 told us, that some time ago, there had been a competition between the bars of who could make the best vegan pintxo. After this many of the bars continued to sell vegan pintxos. K2 was the winner in the competition and the winning pintxo is presented in the picture above. We tried it and we were definitely not disappointed! K2 always has a selection of both vegan and lacto ovo vegetarian pintxos.
- Tirauki – next to K2 you will find the bar Tirauki that serves almost exclusively vegan pintxos. At the time we were there I saw only two pintxos that were not vegan. It was so nice with such a big amount to choose from. This is not something you are spoiled with as a vegetarian.
- Muga – is a rock bar that serves veggie pintxos, sandwiches, hamburgers, salads and much more. I have written about Muga once before but I wanted to include it to this list too due to their big selection of veggie pintxos.
- La Camelia – a small vegan bar that serves (among other things) sushi and more Japanese inspired dishes, soups, cold pressed juices and cakes. Everything is vegan and most of it organic. They also have products available for sale like: tea, beverages, tofu, oil, Japanese delicacies and dry goods. The interior is made by the owners themselves which gives the place a nice atmosphere. We tried some of their cold pressed juices and we give them the highest grade. They were delicious!!
If you are interested in knowing more about vegetarian eating in Basque Country you may have a look here.