Steamed clams in green sauce

We picked up a recipe from Grandma to show you how to make a delicious salsa verde. This Basque sauce will help you succeed when preparing fish or seafood this summer.

The green sauce goes well with white fish like hake, as well as shellfish and mollusks.

Ingredients:

Extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic
1 chilli pepper
40 grams of flour (the quantity will vary depending on the desired thickness)
75 ml of Txakoli
300 ml of fumet
2.5 grams of fresh parsley leaves
150 grams of fresh clams

It's a simple sauce that's incredibly authentic and has a long history in the Basque culinary culture. It was only in 1723 that it was first documented.

It is thus a component of the popular gastronomic tradition, which was created over low heat by moms and grandmothers.

It is essential to get a well-linked sauce, but there is no exact science to how it should be created. Everyone refines it to their preference.

To begin, prepare a casserole with olive oil, a whole chilli, and a garlic clove diced with brunoise (it is optional, but it will give us an interesting spicy touch).

Leave until the garlic begins to dance. This step is crucial when the green sauce is heated but not coloured because if the garlic is roasted, the green sauce will turn brown.

Once we've reached this point, we'll add flour to bind it and thoroughly combine it with the oil, then add a splash of Txakoli and heat it until the alcohol in the wine has evaporated and we're left with only the flavour.

Then pour in the fumet (300 ml) and bring to a boil.

What happens here is that the oil, flour, and txakoli mixture melts, and the sauce thickens as the flour cooks.

It's critical that the sauce boils thoroughly to eliminate the raw flour flavour.

The parsley will be added last. Only the chopped leaves are added; the stem can be used to make the fumet if desired. It should be added at the very end, when there is only 30 seconds or 1 minute left, to give the sauce colour and remove the raw chlorophyll flavour.

Next step is cooking the green sauce with the main product - we'll prepare it with clams in our case.

Take 150g of fresh clams (purchased at Rias Baixas in Galicia, which is of very good quality and variety) and place in a pan with green sauce. Taste for the correct amount of salt and parsley and simmer so that the clams are soaked in the taste of green sauce. You need to remove them when they open, as it is important not to overcook them. This is how we avoid them becoming dry.

Allow them to rest a little and ON EGIN!


Txacolina, the Basque Country wine

To a certain extent, the native grape variety 'hondarribi zuri' gives body, aroma, flavour and soul to txakoli, a unique wine that is typical of the Basque people. It is produced in the three provinces of the Basque Country and has many other designations of origin. They love and promote the characteristics of the local wines in each environment.

Wine production has a long tradition in the Basque Country, not only in Rioja Alavesa. Viticulture IX. It dates back to the 12th century. In any case, the Basques have been making txakoli for a long time, especially with white grapes from Hondarribia. This indigenous grape variety gives a hard, fruity white wine; red txakoli is made from the black Hondarribi variety. Many people remember the 'ojo de gallo', as red txakoli used to be called.

According to the stereotype, txakoli is a young, fresh, medium alcoholic and excessively acidic wine. But in recent times it has overcome barriers and prejudices and has positioned itself among the great wines, beyond mere typicity. Wineries are working to bottle wine that can be stored, other varieties are being tested as complements (riesling, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, white sawdust or petit courbu, shrimp or gros manseng, small shrimp or petit manseng, mune grape,), organoleptic characteristics to be added. They also use barrel fermentation and the process of ageing in sand. In this way, they obtain wines with greater structure, roundness and complexity, and have even dared to make sparkling wines. In the globalised market, there is no longer any limit or barrier for our txakoli.

Production is attractive for the growing wine and food tourism, and is carried out under the following three designations of origin: Bizkaiko Txakolina, Getariako Txakolina and Álava Txakolina. Each of them has its own characteristics and promotes them as well. In Bizkaia, for example, they make more complex wines and recommend drinking them by the glass; in Gipuzkoa, on the other hand, they have opted for carbonated ones and, following tradition, they serve the txakoli in a glass of cider.


Our gastronomical jewel, Idiazabal Cheese

Not surprisingly, Idiazabal Cheese was awarded the status of "European Gourmand Heritage" by the French Ministry of Agriculture in 1992. In October 1993, the International Academy of Gastronomy awarded the Gold Medal of Idea Sabal Cheese as one of the best cheeses in Europe. And in 1995, he won the highest award of "Best European Sheep Cheese" at Parma. From there, it continues to add awards at national and international levels, and the Idiazabal Appellation is recognized as one of the best sheep cheeses in the world.

Our mountain cheese from Aralar

Its origin is in our green landscape. It's the same Latxa and Carranzana sheep that have been bred for over 8000 years, and is a native species that makes this precious and recognized cheese from raw milk.

Goieri, meaning "highlands," is based on its gastronomic culture based on land and seasonal products. And don't be afraid that the Goyeri gems are delicious cheeses made from Lazza sheep milk grown in the Aralar Range and Aizkorri pastures. This cheese is named after Idiazabal, one of the villages in the region.

Idiazabal cheese production extends to the Golbeia Nature Park (between Biskaya and Araba), the Lyanada Arabesa region and parts of Navarra.

Latxa sheep reared in the pastures of the Aralar Mountains

The Origin Name was created in October 1987 to protect the market reserved for all genuine Idiazabal cheese makers and to ensure consumers the origin and quality of Basque and Navarra.

The denomination controls the origin of milk and the quality of cheese from both a physicochemical and hygienic point of view (milk purity, no place for mixture, fat, pathogens, etc.) As well as taste, there is a tasting committee, which, thanks to their experience, is gathering a group of people who are able to control the typical characteristics of this cheese.

To ensure that all requirements are met, the Regulatory Council certifies the product with a red ribbon and a sticker on its label.

In Sagardi, this cheese comes directly from two Basque Shepherds (John and Martina). They give sheep the first spring pasture on on Aralar Mountains, at an altitude of 1.000 metres. A rare treat available only to our friends and customers.


Red Tuna (Bluefin) from the Almadraba of Barbate with “Zurrukutuna”

When you think of the exquisite and exclusive Bluefin Tuna from Almadraba, the ancient fishing techniques immediately come to mind. Almadraba has a history of more than 3000 years and extends throughout the Mediterranean, but it is definitely a sight in areas such as the Atlantic coast of Cadiz.

 

 

Ingredients - Red Tuna (Bluefin)
2 portions of Red Tuna from Barbate
2 twigs of chervil
Extra virgin olive oil
Grey salt

Ingredients - "Zurrukutuna”
1 garlic clove
2 choricero peppers
1 dried chilli
1L of chicken broth
Olive oil
Salt
Slice of Pa de Pagès Català bread

Method

Cut the tuna loins into precision-cut Suko block portions and polish with a small amount of oil and salt. Mark the loins with a few seconds on each side. This is enough time for the surface to turn brown without cooking the portion inside.

For the “Zurrukutuna”, start by frying some garlic with oil, add chilli, and fry for a while.

Bake the bread well so it will be ready in time.

Next, add the chicken broth and choricero peppers and simmer on a low heat for 15 minutes

When it has finished boiling, add salt and mash it ready for serving.

Finally, add two chervil twigs for decoration.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Private Dining & Events at Sagardi

Explore our private dining options for that upcoming summerevent!

Shoreditch's dining scene is in line with the interesting and unique neighbourhood itself. So, if you're looking for a private or group dining option, you're in luck.
Retained with plenty of warmth and elegance, the hugely versatile room can accommodate up to 48 people seated and 90 standing with the ability to be divided into smaller rooms for the more intimate events.

Open seven days a week serving lunch and dinner, 48 guests can be accommodated on three long tables, 30 on one table and up to 90 guests for standing cocktail receptions and parties.

Amenities include a custom-built private bar, separate rest rooms, disabled lift access, live music or DJ arrangements (fees apply), late-license option until 2am (fees apply), free Wi-Fi, Projector: Vivitek D910HD 3000 Lumen 3D Digital (HDMI connection), Loudspeaker Bose free space DS100F (3.5mm jack plug).
Specialised in hosting events, our services include, business breakfasts, lunch presentations, general meetings, corporate private dining, personal private parties, conferences, networking cocktail parties, formal dinners, anniversary & birthday celebrations and many more.

Our private room is a dramatically designed private dining space following the trend of the Basque Cider Houses with an extensive use of industrial steel, huge wooden tables and bare concrete floors. Based on the Basque "txokos" (gastronomical societies) where the Basques come together to cook, experiment with new ways of cooking, dine and socialise together.

Please contact reservations@sagardi.co.uk or call 020 3802 0478


Discover unique wine culture and traditions in the heart of the Basque Country

 

When we think about Euskadi, it is automatic to think of the wealth of its lands and the gastronomy that it brings but what is not to be overshadowed are the spectacular wines belonging to the Rioja region or the famous Txakoli.

The history of Basque wines can be linked to the Romans, Phoenicians and Celtiberians, who commercially utilised the vines and its juices. It is from there, we inherited the tradition of the grape harvest, a custom with strong family roots that is celebrated in Rioja Alavesa.

The grape reaches the perfect point of maturation in autumn at which point the entire territory is turned over to its harvest in order to start the production of a new vintage. Thousands of years of tradition which has been passed down through generations and unbreakable teamwork is what maintains the mark of the past with modern and current adaptations.

 

 

Tradition is also what makes the precious Txakoli what it is today with its acidic touch characterised by the autochthonous variety hondarribi zuri. Many of these vineyards are located on slopes overlooking the sea of great scenic beauty where it is possible to enjoy activities along with food and wine experiences.

The history of wine has marked the way for many towns in the Basque Country, as they get to know the character of each one, discovering the true experience it offers to lovers of wine and tourism. 

On this website, you will find all the information you need to discover the culture of wine in Euskadi https://tourism.euskadi.eus/en/wine-holiday 

 

 

In collaboration with:
www.euskadigastronomika.eus 


I dream of Gilda’s - Sagardi tasted by Theor Verplancke, gastronomic consultant in Amsterdam

 

As a foodie, I too have made the “pilgrimage" to the Basque Country, and loved every bite of it.

A few years ago, I took my daughter to Azurmendi which was her first ever visit to a three-star Michelin restaurant. While this was a truly amazing experience, even more memorable were the visits to the small restaurants around San Sebastian and Bilbao. This is where I fell in love with Basque food, the lifestyle, and culture.  Now, having the opportunity to work with Sagardi, I am learning what makes the Basque kitchen, and its people so very special.

 

 

During my first ever lunch at Sagardi Barcelona, I had the privilege to share a table with Mikel and Iñaki López de Viñaspre and the restaurant’s marketing team. Together we savoured our way through the menu, with Mikel and Iñaki making sure I tasted every quintessential dish, and their accompanying wines! This was a truly epic lunch, and the perfect way to discover what the Basque Country has to offer.

 

Whilst sharing food in the typical Basque style, the Sagardi team explained in passionate detail, why the restaurant was created and their ambitious plans for the future. They also explained how the variety of the Basque landscape provides an enormous choice of produce which is evident in the range of ingredients used in their dishes. Fresh sheep cheese is sourced from the famous Basque mountains, and organic vegetables and free-range beef from their lower-lying meadows. The valleys offer an outstanding selection of wines and along the extensive coastline there is a bountiful supply of fresh, sustainable fish and shellfish.

 

 

On the first night Sagardi opened in Amsterdam I took some friends there expecting the restaurant to be doing the same as other newly-opening restaurants I work with – to be taking it slow and testing its menu, however, I could not be more wrong! Sagardi was already feeling like a well-established favourite, with a bubbly, busy service, and food of the exact same quality as in Barcelona. Even more importantly, the intense pride, hospitality and passion the chefs and the staff showed as they served us, was also the same. It was amazing.

 

 

That night I dreamt of Gilda’s for the very first time. Now a recurrent and welcomed occurrence, thank goodness, I now have a little of the Basque Country around the corner…

 


Let's prepare a good summer "sofrito"

We are undoubtedly living in a historical moment in which life has been accelerated to unprecedented levels.

This “fast-life” approach, adopted by the likes of Netflix and Amazon, has made immediacy a generalised demand to which we give in, influencing more and more our way of doing things.

We let ourselves be seduced by the comfort of ease and accessibility; but also detachment and a standardization of taste.

With “everything everywhere” you will find that the “everything” ends up being all the same. We propose a return to the old, trusty flavours and way of life, which upon one bite, tells you about the place, its people, their way of living life, their characters, customs and origins.

In our fight against speed and haste, we reclaim the quiet, understated pleasures and enjoy what is slowly simmered rather than microwaved.

What better way to do this than with a good "sofrito" like the flagship recipe of the “xup-xup” from the kitchen cooked without a necessity for hurrying or urgency.

 

Here we leave you with the recipe for a deeply rich "sofrito" sauce which we would accompany with our Bonito del Norte. A perfect tomato-based recipe to enjoy during the tomato season or can be stored in a bain-marie to enjoy all year round.

 

 

Ingredients:

1 KG of seasonal tomatoes (we recommend pear or teardrop tomatoes)
1 KG of onions
2 garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt
Ground black pepper
Brown sugar

 

Method:

· Finely chop the onions and sauté them in extra virgin olive oil with a pinch of salt and brown sugar. Maintain a medium-low heat (160º) and wait for the onion to take on an intense honey colour.

· Chop the garlic cloves and add them to the pan to brown.

· Clean, peel and crush the tomatoes to create a tomato puree texture, add to the pan and lower the heat to simmer.

· Add the bay leaves (or the desired seasoning i.e. chorizo pepper, basil or nutmeg).

· Wait for all the flavours to mix well and for the excess water from the tomatoes and onions to evaporate (do not add additional water).

· Take a moment to enjoy the aroma of the "xup-xup" and help yourself to a glass of wine to whet your appetite and liven up the wait.

· Season the sauce, and if necessary correct the acidity with extra brown sugar.

 


Sagardi Basque Country Chefs are representing Basque cuisine at Meatopía

 

 

This coming weekend a 3 day international festival (from 3-5 September) will be held at Tobacco Dock in East London, bringing together some of the world’s best live-fire chefs including our very own Mikel Lz from Viñaspre from our restaurant in Shoreditch.

 

Meatopia is undoubtedly one of the greatest festivals for meat lovers. A meeting point for different gastronomic cultures who share the same passion of celebrating sustainable, quality meat and fire.

We will be cutting and roasting more than 350kg of our well-known old cow txuleton, which is fast becoming a staple must-eat in the city’s capital.

 

The continued participation of Sagardi in the last few editions of the festival have been an amazing boost for the international projection of the concept of the Basque txuleton.

 

 

A fantastic opportunity to explain to the world why, although the trend is to roast young animals for most, the Basques give gastronomic value to the retired, fat, cattle. And publicize the social, cultural and gastronomic value of txuleton.

 


THE BASQUE ROUTE: A ROUTE WITH LOTS OF FLAVOUR

When planning a trip, one of the first decisions is to choose between a rural destination in a natural area full of mountains or travel to a place where you can enjoy its endless beaches. But why choose one or the other?

The Basque Route is a proposal that breaks all the schemes, since its 8 stages it offers the opportunity to discover the Basque Country in its entirety: its cities, its nature, its culture, and of course, its spectacular gastronomy. 

Each route shows a different facet of our land. You decide which and how many you want to do, you just have to take the guide, your car or motorcycle and... start this new adventure! You set your times.

We leave you a proposal of what to do and see in each one of the routes, showing you the most spectacular places of each stage and focusing, above all, on our gastronomic culture.

 

Stage 1. Bilbao - Lekeitio

At this stage, you will leave from the great Bilbao, where you cannot miss the opportunity to taste a breakfast consisting of the typical sweets of the city: the butter bun, the rice cake, the Carolina... And once the batteries are charged, you will visit the Mercado de la Ribera, the largest covered market in the world, where besides being able to buy top quality products, gastronomic workshops and cooking classes are taught.

The first stop will be in Getxo, composed of 5 towns (Andra Mari, Algorta, Las Arenas, Neguri and Romo), and known for its beaches, cliffs, and the beautiful Bahía del Abra You can enjoy a nice walk along these 10 kilometres of coastline. One of the highlights is the Old Port of Algorta, where you can enjoy the best pintxos in front of the sea, take the opportunity to eat!

From one coastal town to another, the next station will be Bakio, a town that stands out for its beaches, coves, and palaces, but, above all, for being so close to one of our treasures: San Juan de Gaztelugatxe. We suggest you visit the Txakoli Museum - Txakolingunea, where you can taste this wine so characteristic of Euskadi and learn about its peculiarities.

Before leaving for Lekeitio, we recommend you make a quick stop in Gernika to taste one of the most exquisite sweets in the area: theOri-Baltzak from the Bidaguren bakery. The best souvenir you can take with you!

To end this stage, you will arrive in Lekeitio, a beautiful fishing village where a lighthouse, an island, and its beach will leave you speechless.  We recommend you have dinner at its cosy port full of restaurants and finish the day with grilled fish!

 

Stage 2. Lekeitio - Zarautz

This second route starts in Lekeitio, where you can have breakfast in the port overlooking the sea, and if you go during the week, you will see how they unload fresh fish and put it on sale in a small stand in front of the Prim grill or in front of the fish market.

From Lekeitio you will set off for Ondarroa, a coastal town with an emblematic old quarter full of medieval streets with a seafaring flavour. Here you can enjoy a simulation of buying and selling fish in the new fishermen's guild run by Kresaltartin Turismo Neskatillak, where they will explain how they carried out this arduous job.

Next, you will leave Bizkaia to discover the sweetest part of Gipuzkoa, stopping in Azpeitia to tasteIgnacios, a dessert made with almonds, puff pastry and cream that will captivate you. The next stop will be in Zumaia, where as well as visiting the flysch paradise, the Geopark, you can take a gastronomic guided tour. And if you go in September, take note, because on the 19th Octopus Day is celebrated on Itzurun beach, where part of the seriesGame of Thrones was filmed.

Then, you should discover the town of Getaria, another charming fishing village in the province of Gipuzkoa. Once there, we recommend a stroll around the port and recover your energy in one of its restaurants. Afterwards, we recommend a visit to Gaintza, a txakoli winery where you can take part in tastings and guided tours.

You will finish this second stage in Zarautz, where, once you have walked along its beautiful boardwalk, you will enter its usual atmosphere to taste its most delicious pintxos.

 

Stage 3. Zarautz - San Sebastián

Once you have had breakfast and a leisurely stroll around Zarautz, take the car or motorbike and drive to Orio. At this stage, you will learn how to cook grilled sea bream, Orio style! And best of all, you will be able to taste it. If it is Friday, you'll do it at the Xixario Restaurant or Orioko Barra…

The next stop is Hondarribia, where you will be fascinated by the old town and the lively neighbourhood of La Marina. Take a nice stroll before heading off to the next destination!

Set off for Pasaia, a town with a seafaring tradition and an extensive cultural heritage. Here you will visit the Albaola factory, where you can learn about the origins and tradition of the arrantzale and the history of the whalers who travelled overseas. You will also be able to see first-hand how a 16th-century ship was built.

On your way to San Sebastian, you will stop off in this city of cinema. We recommend a long stroll along its beaches and enjoying some pintxos in its lively old town.

 

Stage 4. San Sebastián – Vitoria-Gasteiz 

After having breakfast on a terrace overlooking the sea in San Sebastian, we recommend you take a gastronomic tour or workshop in one of the activity companies of Euskadi Gastronomika.

You will then set off for Astigarraga, the birthplace of cider. We recommend a walk to get to know the town and have lunch in one of its famous cider houses. Once your belly is full, what better than shopping? Stop off in Tolosa and take a stroll around its traditional market where you can take guided tours and, if it's Saturday, buy typical local products. However, you can't leave Tolosa without first buying its most famous sweets: cigarettes and tiles.

After buying some gifts for your closest people, drive to Ordizia, where you will find the D'elikatuz Food and Gastronomy Centre, where you can learn more about our gastronomy.

The next plan is related to cheese, the famous Idiazabal. You can find out how it is made and taste it at the Cheese Interpretation Centre in Idiazabal, a village with spectacular natural landscapes.

Leave Idiazabal behind and head for Vitoria-Gasteiz. Take a nice walk around its marvellous streets full of history and murals and enjoy a good selection of pintxos to end the day.

 

Stage 5. Vitoria-Gasteiz – Laguardia 

In the morning, have breakfast in the gastro bars of the Plaza de Abastos in Vitoria-Gasteiz and enjoy the daily hustle and bustle of this modern market.

The next stop will be in Salvatierra/Agurain, surrounded by forests of impressive beech trees and with an old town of artistic interest. In this municipality, you will have the opportunity to learn first-hand how craft beer is brewed by visiting Olbea Pilsner.

Before leaving for Elciego, we recommend you stop for lunch at a restaurant in the Llanada Alavesa. Once in Elciego, in the south of the Rioja Alavesa, you will be welcomed by the majestic forms of Frank Gehry's hotel in the Ciudad del Vino, where you will also be able to visit the Marqués de Riscal winery. In Rioja Alavesa you will find a multitude of plans and experiences around the world of wine, not only visiting some of its numerous wineries, but also strolling and even having lunch among the vineyards, visiting the cellars or tastings with the winemakers themselves.

To end the day, we suggest you have a light dinner in Laguardia and take a walk through its streets at dusk.

 

Stage 6. Laguardia – Orduña

You will wake up in Laguardia, a walled town and capital of Rioja Alavesa. After breakfast and an early morning stroll, drive to Salinas de Añana to discover Valle Salado. Once at the interpretation centre, you can book a guided tour to learn more about its history and tradition, and you can even buy salt-related products.

Take the opportunity to have lunch in Añana before heading to Orduña, where you can book a guided tour with tasting in one of its wineries. It is a town declared a historic-monumental site, so get lost in its historic quarter and enjoy its many monuments.

To end the day, you can have dinner in one of its traditional restaurants or opt for a light dinner of pintxos.

 

Stage 7. Orduña – Bilbao

Have breakfast in one of Orduña's pastry shops and then set off for the Salto de Nervión, one of the most spectacular views that nature has to offer. Take a nice walk to make yourself hungry!

After expending energy, it is time to recover, and what better plan than a visit to a chocolate shop? Make a stop in Balmaseda and visit Kaitxo, where you can try their star products. Take the opportunity to get to know the town and stroll around its medieval streets, and if you're up for it, try its famous putxeras (beans with sacraments). You have got the whole plan!

Nearby, we recommend a visit to the Galdames Winery, where, in addition to learning about Basque wine culture, you can enjoy our tasty wine.

On your way to Bilbao, we suggest you stop in Santurtzi and discover its seafaring flavour, taste a grilled fish or its variety of pintxos, and end the day strolling around the most nocturnal part of Bilbao.

 

Stage 8. Lekeitio – Vitoria-Gasteiz

Before touring the picturesque fishing village of Lekeitio, you can have breakfast at the Trinkete bar, next to a typical Basque pediment, one of the trinkets where pelota mano is still played.

The next stop will be Abadiño, where you can go to Alluitz Natura and learn more about the wool of the latxa sheep and how to handle their fibre. You can also bring a kit home with you.

After learning more about our culture, you can stop in Durango and stroll around this beautiful town with an interesting architectural heritage. Take the opportunity to have lunch in one of its succulent restaurants.

Next, stop in Olaeta, in the municipality of Aramaio, at the Atxeta cheese dairy owned by the Olympic athlete Maider Unda. You can take a guided tour where you will learn about the peculiarities of the latxa sheep (our native breed), see how cheese is made, and best of all, taste this prized delicacy.

To finish this last stage, head towards Vitoria-Gasteiz and after wandering around this pleasant city, visit one of the typical confectioner's shops to take home a sweet souvenir.

These are our suggestions for you to get to know the best of our land and our gastronomy. You can do them all or combine the ones you like the most.

Get ready for a mouth-watering journey through the Basque Country!

 

Text in collaboration with:


www.euskadigastronomika.eus