Spain is the world’s #2 tourist destination following France. In 2003, 51.8 million vacationers descended upon Sunny Spain to bask in the Mediterranean rays and bathe their brains in the best sangria the world has to offer. Not to mention the food — Paella, Jamon Iberico (Iberian Ham), tantalizing tapas, and more olives than you can shake a branch at.
That is all fine and good for carnivorous vacationers eager to slap some fresh salami on their pan (bread) and call it a day. What’s left for those who elect a more organic existence and opt out when it comes to flesh eating carne time? A week-long sustenance on wine from a box and some nuts? Perhaps a few years ago, but even in a slow-to-change country that clings dearly to its three hour lunch break — things are changing.
Spaniards are slowly becoming more open to wholesome living as evidenced by vegetarian alternatives popping up on even the most traditional menus, organic storefronts squeezing their way between carnicerias, and strictly vegetarian restaurants cropping up.
Over the next few postings we will take a look at eco-friendly stores and restaurants in Barcelona. We will focus specifically on Barcelona because it is arguably the most cosmopolitan city in Spain, (those who hail from Madrid will beg to differ), and it is where your faithful correspondent currently resides.