Share This Gerry Dawes's Spain Post


Instagram

In 2019, again ranked in the Top 50 Gastronomy Blogs and Websites for Gastronomists & Gastronomes in 2019 by Feedspot. "The Best Gastronomy blogs selected from thousands of Food blogs, Culture blogs and Food Science. We’ve carefully selected these websites because they are actively working to educate, inspire, and empower their readers with . . . high-quality information. (Last Updated Oct 23, 2019)

Over 1,150,000 views since inception, 16,000+ views in January 2020.



36. Gerry Dawes's Spain: An Insider's Guide to Spanish Food, Wine, Culture and Travel gerrydawesspain.com

"My good friend Gerry Dawes, the unbridled Spanish food and wine enthusiast cum expert whose writing, photography, and countless crisscrossings of the peninsula have done the most to introduce Americans—and especially American food professionals—to my country's culinary life. . .” - - Chef-restaurateur-humanitarian José Andrés, Nobel Peace Prize Nominee and Oscar Presenter 2019; Chef-partner of Mercado Little Spain at Hudson Yards, New York 2019

2/03/2022

"An instant classic and an absolute beaut of a book." A Stupendous Review by London writer Tim Pinks of Sunset in a Glass: Adventures of a Food and Wine Road Warrior in Spain Volume I Enhanced Photography Edition

 
* * * * * 
I have never met Tim Pinks, who was born in Tripoli (Libya), lived in Scotland, now lives in London, is a gifted writer and has been attending the Fiestas de San Fermín in Pamplona since 1984. 
 
Tim Pinks was given the "Guiri of the Year" Award by Señor Testis, the blue bull with the yellow horns, an image made famous world-wide by my friend Mikel Urmeneta* and his crew at Kukuxumusu, the Drawings and Ideas Factory that Urmeneta founded.  (Mikel Urmeneta has since moved on and now runs
Katuki Saguyaki, another innovative drawings and ideas studio.)
 
(*I am currently in conversations with Mikel Urmeneta about translating into Spanish, designing and publishing Sunset in a Glass in Spain.)
 
 * * * * *
Tim Pinks wrote this stupendous review of Sunset in a Glass: Adventures of a Food and Wine Road Warrior in Spain Volume I in a post on the Amigos de Pamplona FB page.
 
 
SUNSET IN A GLASS – by Gerry Dawes
 
"Dear Soulsters of Spain, Adiskideak of Euskadi, and Enamorados de Navarra…
 
Covid has kicked the cubo! For the last few days I’ve travelled the length and breadth of Spain, and seen and tasted things the like of which I have never experienced in my life.
 
A bit like the famous old Hank Snow, ‘I’ve been everywhere’ song – of which Johnny Cash does a great version - I’ve been to Sanlucar de Barrameda, Sevilla, Chinchon, Ribera del Duero, Pamplona, Roncesvalles and Barcelona too… And La Rioja and Granada and the Cradle of Castille and many other places also… Heck, I even travelled back in time and joined Gerry and some soldiers for many trips on a train in late Franco era Spain…
Yup, all from that book by a certain Señor Gerry Dawes!
 
I was going to wait until I’d finished the book…but I just can’t. When I have I’ll write a review for Amazon…but Amigos gets the world exclusive!
 
To all who love Spain, to aficionados of its wines, lovers of its food, and revellers in its regions…or just those who like a terrific travel tale…this is the book for you.
 
 
Sunset In A Glass. Isn’t that just one of the best titles ever?
 
I so, so wanted to like this book…but I don’t. I love, love, LOVE this book. Now I haven’t finished it yet as I’m only up to chapter twelve, a little over halfway but I know enough now that I will love the whole thing. Actually, I knew that after just a couple of chapters.
 
Oh my goodness what a beautifully written, wonderfully told and hugely entertaining book this is. The prose is so easy to read yet as poetic as it comes and the words slip by like the proverbial fine wine slides down. And I don’t mean to gush or sound sycophantic here…it just really is a superb book.
 
It’s also informative, funny and packed full of superb photographs. Gerry recommended I get the ‘enhanced photography edition’ so I did, and although not cheap at 25 Guineas in old money, old things, it is very much worth it. It’s a beautiful book to feel, hold, open and read…pure quality. And big, too, at eight and a half inches by eleven.
 
I could write a review of each chapter and pick out poetic quotes from the beautiful writing, but here are just a couple. From chapter one, where the book gets it title from. Describing an alternative and romantic version of where the Mediterranean town Sanluca de Barrameda gets it’s name from:
 
‘Several ships bearing treasure from the New World were wrecked and sunk after running on to the sandbar, so maybe part of the gold leaf laid down on the sea by the setting sun could be reflections of sunken Aztec or Inca gold bullion…’ Isn’t that beautiful?
 
Or this, Amigi, from the Pamplona chapter, talking about some of the people he met on his first visit to the fiesta capital of the world in 1970:
 
‘…the Pamplona regulars – that international group of spiritual descendants of Ernest Hemingway’s and Gertrude Stein’s Lost Generation who return to San Fermin each July to revel in the light of a sun that for them still rises.’ To revel in the light of a sun that for them still rises…isn’t that just perfect?
This is a book to revel in.
 
He takes us from the Franco era of the country where he wonderfully evokes an ‘old’ Spain that so many people fell in love with, to the modern Spain we all know today. He even mentions, in a nano typing of brevity, the country of my birth, Libya.
 
It’s funny to think that as my brother and I were playing at the Tripoli Yacht Club while mum and dad shared drinks with friends at the bar…Gerry Dawes could have been in one of those US military planes flying off the coast. (Did you ever land at Wheelus, Mr. Dawes?!) Well I never…
 
Now, it is time to bring James Michener in here, because it was thanks to him that I first went to Pamplona in ’84. A few years later the fantastic Ike del Rosario, who I met in the square that same first year, (and who died way, way too young in October) gave me a copy of Michener’s Iberia. And I don’t care what anyone says about Michener, his writing, or indeed Iberia…I love that book.
 
And do you know what? In a strange, yet very fitting way, this wonderful book in some way compliments Iberia. In a completely different way it somehow comes across to me as an updated – but very different – version of Michener’s classic. And that is a huge compliment.
 
Actually, I’ll include another classic in this little set – Hemingway’s ‘The Dangerous Summer.’ All three criss-cross Spain in very different ways…but all three are classics. Because Gerry has already written a classic with ‘Sunset’ of this I am in no doubt whatsoever.
 
Like Ernest’s grandson John Hemingway did with his modern take on The Sun Also Rises, with ‘Bacchanalia’…these books go with their illustrious predecessors like, well, wine and cheese. Actually, wine and anything…
 
Hopefully this is the first in five of a trilogy. (Don’t worry, GD and I know what that means!) It’s actually volume one, folks, so we know there is more to come. Like at a fine dinner when you know that when one bottle is done another one will be coming along…
 
I’m now over half way through ‘Sunset’ but it’s great to know that like a departing excellent wine another one will be arriving…
 
Honestly, Fiesteros, it is just the most fantastic book. After every chapter I’m either smiling, laughing, saying something to myself like, ‘’It’s just so brilliantly bloody good!” or all three at the same time.
 
I do waffle on so now it’s time to shuffle off. If I was to attempt a super-shortened ‘back blurb’ style version of the above it would be this:
 
At one point, describing Ferran Adria of El Bulli (I’m using the original spelling) and his internationally influencing, cuisine changing inventions, he uses the term ‘a culinary Krakatoa.’ Well this book is a literary love letter. Literally a love letter to a land that Gerry loves. Thanks to him I’ve travelled the length and breadth of Iberia. I’ve drunk it, tasted it and even travelled back in time to it. To a Spain long gone…but also wonderfully still here.
 
Congratulations Gerry, you have written an instant classic and an absolute beaut of a book."--Tim Pinks, London.  
 
 
Comments are welcome and encouraged.
 
Text and photographs copyright by Gerry Dawes©2021.  Using photographs without crediting Gerry Dawes©2021 on Facebook.  Publication without my written permission is not authorized.

* * * * *
  Shall deeds of Caesar or Napoleon ring
More true than Don Quixote's vapouring?
Hath winged Pegasus more nobly trod
Than Rocinante stumbling up to God?
 
Poem by Archer M. Huntington inscribed under the Don Quixote on his horse Rocinante bas-relief sculpture by his wife, Anna Vaughn Hyatt Huntington,
in the courtyard of the Hispanic Society of America’s incredible museum at 613 W. 155th Street, New York City.
 _______________________________________________________________________________________________
 Gastronomy Blogs

In 2019, again ranked in the Top 50 Gastronomy Blogs and Websites for Gastronomists & Gastronomes in 2019 by Feedspot. (Last Updated Oct 23, 2019) 

"The Best Gastronomy blogs selected from thousands of Food blogs, Culture blogs and Food Science blogs in our index using search and social metrics. We’ve carefully selected these websites because they are actively working to educate, inspire, and empower their readers with frequent updates and high-quality information."  

36. Gerry Dawes's Spain: An Insider's Guide to Spanish Food, Wine, Culture and Travel


 
About Gerry Dawes

My good friend Gerry Dawes, the unbridled Spanish food and wine enthusiast cum expert whose writing, photography, and countless crisscrossings of the peninsula have done the most to introduce Americans—and especially American food professionals—to my country's culinary life." -- Chef-restaurateur-humanitarian José Andrés, Nobel Peace Prize Nominee and Oscar Presenter 2019


Gerry Dawes is the Producer and Program Host of Gerry Dawes & Friends, a weekly radio progam on Pawling Public Radio in Pawling, New York (streaming live and archived at www.pawlingpublicradio.org and at www.beatofthevalley.com.)

Dawes was awarded Spain's prestigious Premio Nacional de Gastronomía (National Gastronomy Award) in 2003. He writes and speaks frequently on Spanish wine and gastronomy and leads gastronomy, wine and cultural tours to Spain. He was a finalist for the 2001 James Beard Foundation's Journalism Award for Best Magazine Writing on Wine, won The Cava Institute's First Prize for Journalism for his article on cava in 2004, was awarded the CineGourLand “Cinéfilos y Gourmets” (Cinephiles & Gourmets) prize in 2009 in Getxo (Vizcaya) and received the 2009 Association of Food Journalists Second Prize for Best Food Feature in a Magazine for his Food Arts article, a retrospective piece about Catalan star chef, Ferran Adrià. 


". . .That we were the first to introduce American readers to Ferran Adrià in 1997 and have ever since continued to bring you a blow-by-blow narrative of Spain's riveting ferment is chiefly due to our Spanish correspondent, Gerry "Mr. Spain" Dawes, the messianic wine and food journalist raised in Southern Illinois and possessor of a self-accumulated doctorate in the Spanish table. Gerry once again brings us up to the very minute. . ." - - Michael & Ariane Batterberry, Editor-in-Chief/Publisher and Founding Editor/Publisher, Food Arts, October 2009. 
 
Pilot for a reality television series on wine, gastronomy, culture and travel in Spain.
 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails