Pamplona’s Cuisine and Festivals: Discover the Unique Experience
The celebration of the San Fermín festivals is mainly experienced in the streets of the city. The atmosphere in Pamplona brings together families, groups of friends, and people of different ages around a unique program. Undoubtedly, gastronomy is one of the ingredients of the celebration, feeding encounters and conversations during lunches, breakfasts, and dinners. In our Complete Guide to San Fermín in Pamplona, you can find information about the history, the running of the bulls, tourist accommodations, and gastronomy. In this article, we delve more deeply into the culinary and gastronomic universe through the most representative products and flavors.
Authentic flavors: typical dishes of San Fermín
The streets of Pamplona stand out for the wide range of bars, restaurants, and cafes that offer quality service throughout the year. But what are the most demanded products from July 6th to the 14th? A dish of fried eggs, combined with ham or chorizo, is one of the timeless recipes. Local products, which succeed beyond San Fermín, reflect the wide variety of flavors that enrich Navarre’s cuisine: asparagus, piquillo peppers, and pochas are synonymous with quality. The gastronomic universe of the festivals also expands with a complete variety of croquettes and fried dishes. There are other simple but very appetizing combinations: loin with potatoes is another example. On the other hand, sandwiches are a highly demanded format during the festivals, a practical choice for outdoor dinners. Many people grab a sandwich while watching the fireworks spectacle that lights up the city sky.
Where to enjoy the gastronomic quality of San Fermín in Pamplona? Café Iruña stands out not only for its historical perspective, as it opened its doors in 1888 but also for its excellent location: it is in Plaza del Castillo, number 44. The venue is complemented by a large outdoor terrace. Another reference space in Pamplona is El Panadero de Eugui, located on Carlos III (number 24). It offers one of the typical recipes in San Fermín: hot chocolate with churros. And it has an extensive range of flavors: tapas, toasts, cakes, pastries, sandwiches, etc. Restaurant Rodero, on Emilio Arrieta Street, has a great reputation. If you want to taste a delicious selection of tapas, Bar Gaucho, located on Travesía Espoz y Mina, is a reference. Another centrally located establishment is Cafetería Palace on Calle Estella (also offering lunches and dinners). One tapas bar, which stands out for its excellent location and spacious terrace, is Cafetería Reta. It is at the following address: Plaza de la Libertad, number 8.
Vibrant festive atmosphere: music, dances, and entertainment at San Fermín
Undoubtedly, music can be heard from different corners of the city through numerous initiatives and concerts that take place mainly in Plaza de la Cruz, Parque Antoniutti, Plaza del Castillo, and Plaza de los Fueros. The rhythm does not stop at any time of the day, thanks to the ‘txarangas’ that roam the streets, the ‘jotas’ that sound every noon in Paseo de Sarasate, and the music bands in Plaza de la Cruz that surprise the audience from 1:00 pm onwards. The rhythm of the streets is completed with the songs played in the bars. One of the most traditional events of the festivals is the ‘Baile de la Alpargata’ (Espadrille Dance) held at the Nuevo Casino in Plaza del Castillo. It is an invitation to dance around breakfast time.
Highlighting gastronomy in San Fermín
As you can see, food is very present in the different scenarios that are part of the festivals, as we already explained in our Complete Guide to San Fermín in Pamplona. For example, afternoon snacks in the Plaza de Toros of the city are a must. It is also common to have hot chocolate with churros after the running of the bulls. If you visit Pamplona during the upcoming festivals, it is important to check the scheduled program for each day between July 6th and 14th. The magic of San Fermín is also very present at the Hotel Maisonnave. In fact, the name of the Caravinagre Cafeteria pays homage to one of the most representative figures of the Gigantes y Cabezudos (Giants and Bigheads) Parade through one of its ‘kilikis’.
During the San Fermín festivals, there are so many people in the city center that some prefer to look for quieter streets to eat or have dinner (such as the Iturrama area, Avenida Sancho El Fuerte, and Pío XII). One of the gastronomic events that has been held in several editions at Baluarte is the ‘San Ferminetako Kantu Jaia,’ which combines gastronomy, a good atmosphere, music, conversation, and folklore. Generally, there is a large influx of customers in bars, cafes, and restaurants. Therefore, it is advisable to reserve a table, especially during the weekend.