Bar Casa Puga, Almeria

7 Oct

Yesterday we took Mick’s mum to Almeria shopping.  Well, at least I wanted to go shopping and the last time Sadie went to Almeria with one of her other boys she was taken straight to the football stadium and home again!  So we thought she deserved to actually see the city this time, you know, with shops, coffee stops and everything!  I always like to go to Zara Home at the Mediterranean Shopping Centre and needed to exchange something.   But our other main reason for going to Almeria was to take Sadie to our very favourite tapas bar for lunch.


Casa Puga exterior


Casa Puga is something of an institution for the locals; located in the old town near the cathedral, it has been run by the same family since 1870 and is a truly authentic Spanish experience.  It has a fabulous long marble bar where people stand and have a drink and a tapa, where the waiters tot up and write bills in pencil on the bar and then there are a certain amount of small marble tables, mainly at the back for a proper lunch or dinner.  You are all crammed in together, which is just as well as you want to see what everyone else is having (in these places they always seem to serve stuff which isn’t on the menu, and we hate missing out!).  They serve the best mushrooms, prawns in batter and the most fabulous jamon iberico – it is the good stuff and pretty pricey by standards around here – 17 euros for a plate, but plenty for three of us.


As authentic as it gets!


The staff run around constantly, bringing more dishes in any old order, and you just lift your glass to indicate wanting another, so you are never really waiting for anything.  Mick finished with what I can only describe as a miniature black pudding paninni – exquisite.  As we were having a leg of roast lamb for dinner we decided not to go too crazy, but could have easily stayed until 4 o’clock stuffing ourselves – it is the most wonderful place to end a shopping trip – you need to arrive by quarter to two though, in order to get a seat – otherwise you have to stand and eat at the bar, not good if you have been schlepping about for 2 or 3 hours.  Evenings there, particularly on Friday nights, are noisy, smoky, fun affairs and attract a vibrant and interesting crowd – so long as you can persuade one of your party to drive home it is worth the hour long trip.

Here’s the fabulous mushroom recipe as shown by Juan the barman.

Casa Puga telephone number: 950 231 530

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