rioja.jpg
Rioja vineyards photo by Gabriella Ranelli

Basque Country: Food & Wine 
A foodie paradise, with more Michelin stars per capita than anywhere in the world. Food is a lifestyle here, and there is so much to enjoy in the Basque region. You’ll start your trip in Bilbao, an industrial city that has undergone a breathtaking renovation and revival in the last two decades. Next, head down to the Rioja region for a few days of tours and tastings, delving into the culture and history of the region. In San Sebastian, a sparkling gem on the Cantabrian Sea, you’ll taste the famed pintxos (Basque tapas), try your hand in a cooking class, and visit the small town of Getaria, coastal wine country.

Day 1
Arrive in Bilbao and meet your guide for a stroll around the Old Quarter. Enjoy dinner at a refined and cozy restaurant overlooking the river.

Day 2
Visit the remarkable Frank Gehry-designed Guggenheim Museum before heading south to the Rioja wine region. Put your palates to the test in an afternoon of tasting at an introductory wine course, and then enjoy dinner at a gastronomic restaurant.

Day 3
Tour and taste at some of our favorite wineries in the region, learning about Spanish grape varietals and growing techniques, as well as trends in today’s wine market. Have lunch at the winery before touring the walled village of Laguardia. Rub elbows with locals as you head out on the town for a dinner of tapas in the Riojan capital of Logroño.

Day 4
Drive north to San Sebastian, the sparkling gem of the Cantabrian coast. Get a feel for the city on a guided stroll and have a casual dinner in an eno-bistro wich has a special focus on sherries and sparkling wines.
 
Day 5 
See San Sebastian through the eyes of a gastronome as you visit the local producers, taste cheeses at our favorite shop, and compare olive oils in a specialty market stand. Head to our Old Town culinary studio and roll up your sleeves for a hands-on cooking class and pair the dishes with Basque and Spanish wines. Enjoy dinner on the terrace of a beautifully renovated farmhouse on the outskirts of the city which boasts one of Spain’s best wine cellars.

Day 6
Drive along the coast to the fishing village of Getaria, home of the designer Balenciaga and explorer Juan Sebastian Elkano. Tour and taste at the oldest txakoli winery in the D.O.C., and enjoy a grilled fish for lunch at a restaurant overlooking the port. Back in San Sebastian, spend the evening mingling with locals as you hit up the best pintxos bars in towns, pairing small bites with local libations.

Day 7
Pack up your bags and say agur! (Farewell!) to the Basque Country as you head on to your next destination.

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