Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

El Tobaso in Seville, Spain

Two of our guides had mentioned Al Tobaso, and now that we are warm and dry, the sun is out and we have taken a serious nap, we are ready for a late Spanish lunch. We head for Al Tobaso, which is not far from our hotel, and are shown to a table.

The waiter if friendly, without being over-friendly, and brings us menus which we can’t really understand, but isn’t that part of why you go to a foreign country? You have to take a risk now and then, right? AdventureMan orders one selection from the daily menu, and I order another. He orders red wine, and I order water. We plan on taking a long walk, and if I drink wine with my lunch, I probably won’t, LOL.


The waiter brings us a plate of delicious green olives, spicy and garlicky. YUMMM. And then, oh no, here comes a “flamenco” guitar player, and I put that in quotes because he sings the same thing pretty much over and over, and we recognize some words, “Bye, Baby, Bye”. He is at another table, one with lots of people, but there is no avoiding him, eventually he heads our way. In the meantime a man has come, and we think he is asking for money, but he gives the same speech at every table, no variation, and no one gives him anything. When the guitar player comes, AdventureMan gives him some change because at least he provided something, even if it was really, really bad.

green olives

When our main courses come, they look almost identical, but not. I have spinach and garbonzos, but what a difference from last night, these are spiced! We love our main courses, but we have no idea, still, what we are eating.



We just can’t eat this much, and it is OK, we are happy. We wonder if my husband’s wine is included or extra, and then a platter of meat and cheese arrives, the meat looks and tastes like prosciutto, but we didn’t order this so we start getting concerned because we are afraid we will be charged for food we didn’t order. Then another plate, with two different kinds of salami arrives, and we don’t touch it.


And then the bill arrives, and nothing is extra, it is all included. We just need to have a little more faith šŸ™‚ The entire time we were in Spain, we were amazed at the quality of the food and the reasonable prices. We would go back to Al Tobaso in a heartbeat, but we need to learn a little more Spanish. The waiter has been so kind to us, and we are those ignoramuses who haven’t a clue. Lack of language skills kept us from asking about the meat and cheese and salamis, which either were included, or he was giving us because lunch hour was ending and he had some leftovers. Our lack of Spanish caused us to fear that which we didn’t understand. So unnecessary.

November 18, 2015 - Posted by | Adventure, Cultural, Customer Service, Eating Out, ExPat Life, Restaurant, Travel | , ,


  1. Hey there šŸ™‚ I have lived half year in Spain in a small city near Madrid and I was just like you in the beginning but I’ve learned the language and customs a bit, along the way because I have fell in love with this country and its people, they are so heart warming šŸ™‚ The extra food is given if you take a drink, it’s like their gift to you and they do that in every bar and restaurant. Just discovered your blog and I love it so I’m looking forward to your next posts.

    Comment by Camelia | December 17, 2015 | Reply

    • Thanks, Camelia. You are right, having a little language skill is key!

      Comment by intlxpatr | December 24, 2015 | Reply

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