Glasgow's Cafe Andaluz is celebrating Fiesta Nacional de España with an extra special celebratory menu this week. 

The Fiesta Nacional de España is the national day of Spain, a national holiday held annually on October 12. It commemorates the anniversary of Christopher Columbus's first arrival in the Americas.

As the southernmost region of Spain, Andalusia is one of the most gastronomically unique areas of the country. Famous for its vast amounts of fertile farmland, vertiginous mountain ranges and rugged coastline, Andalusian cuisine is big on its mix of meat, fish and of course, its tapas. 

In 2008, Joe Conetta had the idea of bringing a taste of Spain to Glasgow. Today his nephew Mario and son Tony continue serving up Spanish tapas in Glasgow, both in the city centre and the west end. 

Evening Times: CalamariCalamari

Keeping the Spanish spirit alive, Cafe Andaluz this week have introduced a special 'Fiesta Nacional de España' menu in celebration of Spain's National Day this October.

The Evening Times had a taste of the celebratory tapas last weekend and safe to say it was definitely something to write home about - and so here we are.

The 'Fiesta Nacional de España' menu includes a range of Tapas featuring meat, fish and veggies. 

True to form, Cafe Andaluz champions authenticity so many of the dishes are a modern day fusion with traditional Spanish cuisine. 

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Calamares is the usual favourite with crisp-fried calamari rings served with smoked paprika aioli. Also available were fishier options, like the Lubina con salsa Mediterránea, a fillet of sea-bass with slow cooked red peppers, and Gambas Pil Pil - hot roasted king prawns with olive oil, chilli, paprika and garlic. 

Evening Times: Gambas Pil PilGambas Pil Pil

The more meaty tapas options were rich and filling, showcasing the seemingly endless ways in which Spanish cuisine approaches charcuterie. 

Among the options were Albóndigas, traditional spiced pork & beef meatballs in a rich tomato sauce, Chorizo al Vino, sliced chorizo sautéed in red wine, and finally Glasgow's favourite; Croquetas de Jamón y Queso, crisp croquettes stuffed with Serrano ham & mozzarella cheese. 

Many of the tapas were also vegetarian and there are also vegan options, moving away from the previously held notion that Spanish cuisine could eliminate the more herbaceous diners. 

Tortilla Española is a traditional mainstay of Spanish tapas: tortilla is a thick omelette filled with sliced potato and onion.

Evening Times:

Ensalada Andaluza is a salad of asparagus tips, artichokes & sun blush tomatoes with a sweet hinamin dressing and Ensalada de Piñones, which is a salad of pearl couscous, cherry tomatoes and Spanish olives, tossed with lemon, olive oil, sea salt, fresh basil & toasted pine nuts. 

Along with another favourite, Patatas Bravas, skin-on halved new potatoes in a spicy tomato sauce & aioli which interestingly even made as cameo appearance at this years' TRNSMT festival, I would recommend opting for these dishes also if you were looking for more of a lighter meal, with one or two more of the meat or fish tapas. 

The menu is available for a limited time this week, including 5 tapas and 2 desserts between two people for £24 pounds. 

The ways in which Cafe Andaluz strives for authenticity are apparent to anyone who dines among the terracotta and tiles of the restaurant interior.

Menus are written in Spanish with English explanations: this is a welcome addition, a reminder that there are few places in Glasgow that serve a real taste of Spanish cuisine. 

For more info, click here