Cuenca, Spain: City on a cliff

Cuenca, Spain: City on a cliff

Cuenca is situated northwest of Valencia and southeast of Madrid, just an hour from either on the AVE, the fast train.  It is known for the houses perched on the cliffs and for the Júcar and the Huécar, two rivers (well, streams is a better word) which encase it.  The town was first settled by the Moors, who sought to take advantage of its natural fortress qualities.  Nonetheless they lost it in 1177 to the Christians.

The area offers an interesting cuisine, which I will comment upon below the photos.

cuenca bridge
Looking at the town from across the bridge
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Some of the famous cliff side residences
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Whoa!
Near the juncture of the two rivers
Near the juncture of the two rivers
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View from Restaurante el Secreto, Cuenca

cuena from above

Cathedral in Cuenca
Cathedral in Cuenca
Cuenca street
Cuenca street

The Cuisine

There are a number of interesting dishes, mostly tapas.

  • Ajo arriero, cod, potato and garlic, can be spread on bread
  • Morteruelo,  pâté made from hare, partridge, hen and pork or some combination
  • Pisto manchego, tomato, pepper, courgette/zucchini fried in olive oil.  Very thick.
  • Mushrooms, harvested in the forests near Cuenca.  Níscalo is common, but other species, such as boletus (long and large with a cap).
  • Mojete: traditional salad made of tomato.
  • Alajú an Arab cake made of honey, almonds, nuts and grated orange rind.
  • Resoli is an after dinner alcoholic beverage made from grape must, cinnamon, anise.

We had lunch at Restaurante el Secreto.  The Guide Routarde sign for multiple years including 2016 attracted our attention.  The Guide has served us well through the years and it did not disappoint us.  This restaurant has many game offerings.  Peg had the venison, which was superb-  even I thought so.  The wine was very good, local and reasonably priced, as was the entire meal including my ceviche trout.

The decor is worth a look!  Ceramics floor to ceiling.

 

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