Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon’s film/TV series ‘The Trip‘ started as a one off adventure. Pals Coogan and Brydon drove around great British eateries and spawned an internet sensation with their dueling Michael Caine impersonations interspersed with human drama and delectable food porn. Three years later, ‘The Trip To Italy‘ found the duo taking their schtick on the road, with Alanis Morissette backing them up. Now, they’re completing their triptych, taking on the gastronomic paradise of Spain.
In the Spanish leg of this odyssey, Coogan and Brydon joke and stumble their way through the countryside and taste some of the best food the nation has to offer. In honor of this noble quest, we’ve decided to pull all the beautiful food from their journey. Below are the six restaurants that Coogan and Brydon eat, drink, and try their best impressions in. Their imitation of Mick Jagger doing Michael Caine is pretty spot on… but rest assured the food is even better.
TXOKO — GETARIA
Seafood is the name of the game in this seaside village, where Coogan and Brydon sample the brilliantly composed fish dishes on offer at Txoko. Everything is fresh from the sea — just a few steps away. The food is coaxed into it’s more delicious forms with a distinctly Spanish flair. Olive oil, bright colors, and fresh ingredients abound.
ASADOR ETXEBARRI — ATXONDO
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The Basque country likes big steaks. Asador Etxebarri is a must stop nestled deep in the pastoral rolling hills of northeastern Spain. The dish to eat here is the giant flame-grilled side of beef. It’s charred on the outside and succulently pink on the inside. Add on some sides from a classic Basque pantry like olive oil sardines or perfectly executed bright red prawns and you have yourself one of the best meals in the world.
LA POSADA DEL LAUREL — PREJANO
This is Spanish country dining at its best. La Posada del Laurel sits on rolling verdant hills and offers a precision-based take on Northern Spanish classics. The menu isn’t afraid to go for broke on dishes like poached eggs with white truffles. At the same time, the gardens surrounding the restaurant provide the menu with simple salads and shining vegetable-forward plates.
NÖLA — SIGÜENZA
Further down the road toward Madrid, Coogan and Brydon find themselves at Nöla — where Spanish classics are taken to the nth degree. This restaurant has a simple menu with local produce and goods from the surrounding area. Spider crabs, roe deer, and Iberian pork trotters are mere highlights on an all-around stellar, rotating menu. This is simple country cuisine that’s elevated to delicious levels of craft and artistry without killing your wallet.
PARADOR DE ALMAGRO — ALMAGRO
Coogan and Brydon stop off at a resort in a monastery with high-end Spanish fare. Parador has several dining options that range from classic haute cuisine restaurants (where you’ll feel the need to wear a suit and tie) to more casual options (where cured meats and cheeses take center stage). If you’re not staying at the old monastery, it’s still worth dropping in for a meal amongst the old courts and steeples of the grounds.
EL REFECTORIUM — MALAGA
Finally, the pair stop off in Malaga on Spain’s southern coast for some comfort food. El Refectorium is Spanish Tapas done so well that you may never want to leave Spain. These sort of tapas bars are casual and convivial. Expect to drink a lot of wine, eat a lot of cured meats and cheese, and down some of the best fish money can buy. It’s a wonderland of inexpensive food that nourishes the soul.