Montaditos in Seville, Spain – Plaza Nueva Bar & Tapas
I had never heard of a montadito before I lived in Spain. I had it written down on my long list of Spanish foods that I needed to try, but I had no clue what it was. Now that I am a Spanish food pro, (not really but I like to pretend) I have fallen in love with these little morsels of goodness.
What is a Montadito?
A montadito is a lunch staple in the Spanish culinary department. It’s a small sandwich made on a mini crusty roll / baguette and can cost anywhere between €1.00 - €3.00, depending on the place. There are many different types of montaditos with hundreds of different fillings. There is even a famous fast food restaurant called, 100 Montaditos, because they make 100+ different types of montaditos. Most montaditos are pork based, but some have chicken or beef and others are vegetarian. The toppings can range quite a bit to fit what you like. Some montaditos are served on fresh soft rolls while others are served on grilled rolls that have been flattened just a tad making them crispier on top.
My Three Favorite Types of Montaditos
The pringa montadito is a montadito only found in Andalusia, the southern region of Spain. When I first learned the ingredients in a pringa it didn’t sound very appetizing, but trust me on this. You have to try it when you’re in Seville because it is extremely delicious. A pringa consists of pork or roast beef, cured meat of some kind most often chorizo or blood sausage, and pork or beef fat. It is cooked for hours in a slow cooker until the meat starts to gently fall apart. Then it is shredded and combined, put on a toasty roll and, Voilà! Pringa goodness, ready to be devoured!
Jamon y Queso
Jamón is a food staple in Seville. You can find it everywhere! So of course you can eat it on a montadito as well. The Spanish people take their jamón very seriously. The Iberico jamón is a special breed of pigs raised in Spain that are exclusively fed a strict diet of acorns. They are a free-range pig that is found roaming through the oak forests of Spain. The strict acorn diet makes their meat have a slight nutty taste, and it is cured for at least 36 months. This type of jamón isn’t often found on your average montaditos because it is very expensive, but instead you might find a lower quality jamón on your sandwich such as jamón Serrano. The Serrano pigs are a mix of many different types of pigs and the meat is cured for 15 months or less. Serrano jamón isn’t as good as the Iberico jamón, but still tasty nonetheless.
No matter the type of jamón that is used, this montadito is delicious. For me, nothing really beats the combination of flavorful salty jamón with a slice of high quality sharp cheese. It’s traditional but very delicious to say the least. This is what I order the majority of the time.
Serranito de Cerdo
This sandwich is the classic combination that most Sevillians think of when they think of montaditos. The sandwich starts off with a thin grilled piece of pork loin. That is topped with a slice of jamón and lastly, a charred Italian green pepper on top. Some places stop there, but others like to add some garlic aioli or a slice of tomato. Every serranito is a little different. The flavors of this montadito marry so nicely together making for a delicious bite of food.
What to Eat With a Montadito?
Most montaditos are served with potato chips and a small bowl of green olives. I’ve never been a big potato chip person, but dang! When you eat a montadito with potato chips and olives, the flavors all go so well together. It’s a match made in heaven – perfect amount of salty and savory. It’s so good. And top that off with an ice cold Coca-Cola or a Cruzcampo and, Bam! You’ve got a mouthwatering and affordable Spanish lunch.
Where to Eat Montaditos in Seville?
There are so many montadito shops in Seville. At first I thought of doing a “5 Best Montadito Shops in Seville” type of post, but soon I realized how impossible and daunting that was. Too many places to try. So instead, I decided to focus on our favorite little shop that we find ourselves going to quite often in Plaza Nueva.
Plaza Nueva Bar & Tapas
Plaza Nueva Bar & Tapas makes delicious and fresh montaditos. Don’t expect to find other tourists there; you’ll likely be the only one. This place is full of locals – friends and family meeting up for a quick montadito or tapa, and that’s exactly how I like it. It’s a small place, only a few tables on the inside and a couple tables on the outside, plus standing room here and there. We love sitting outside and enjoying our food in the sun. The service is quick, allowing you to get in and out as you please. We usually order one of each of the montaditos listed above and then share them three ways. This makes us not super full, but it takes the edge off and leaves room for something else later like a scoop of ice cream at one of our favorite ice cream shops. They also serve snails, caracoles, (the first picture above says, "Hay Caracoles," which means, "We Have Snails") a popular dish in Seville. They are not my cup of tea but are very popular among the locals. I just can't get myself to try them.
Plaza Nueva Bar & Tapas is located right on the edge of the famous and frequently visited Plaza Nueva. We love walking around this plaza on the weekends and then grabbing a bite to eat here. The trees in this plaza are massive and it’s often bustling with arts and craft fairs as well as small concerts or famous speakers. Jimmy loves bringing his soccer ball here and kicking it around in the wide-open space where he is free to run and play. It’s a beautiful area of Seville. I'm not claiming that Plaza Nueva Bar & Tapas makes the best montaditos in Seville, but with the great setting right along the plaza, the outside seating area among the locals, and the decent tasting food, it is hard to beat.
What’s your favorite Montadito? Where do you like to eat montaditos in Seville? Let me know in the comments below!