Here in Valencia the famous covered food market, or 'Mercado Central de Valencia', is a place to behold. It is one of the oldest food markets in Europe, presenting isle by isle of stacked pork, fish, tea, fruit and so on. It is a lovely feast for the eyes; a kaleidoscope of colour and temptation.

Mercado Central de Valencia

I bought some unsalted cured bacalao (cod) to munch on like  a packet of crisps, the intense flavour moistens the eyes.  Lovely!

Bacalao - salt cod at Mercado central valencia

For the casual wonderer it is worth looking up from the stacks of pork to look at the mosaics that cover the ceiling and light portals in the roof.  The combinations of colours refract around the room and change depending your perspective.

Fruits in the market place

I considered taking a leg of jamon Iberico back to London but had to consider this would constitute my hand luggage and a pigs hoof poking out of the compartment above may not be too attractive to my fellow passengers!

Jamon - spanish cured ham in the market
Needless to say, this excursion has produced a thirst and hunger but luckily it was not far to stroll for the next round of imbibing and degustation.

Address: Plaza de Brujas, s/n  46001 Valencia

Types of pork


Follow us on social media:

Secret Sommelier on TwitterSecret Sommelier on Instagramfacebook 001linkedin 001youtube 001

COPOUT Book by Nick Breeze

Climate change podcast

Last week a picture was posted on Twitter of vines in Shabo, a large estate that lies to the west of Odesa on southern Ukraine’s Black Sea coastline. The image seemed benign at face value but the reality, of course, is that the city of Odesa has been bracing itself for attack by Russian forces. 


As COVID-19 conspires with the grimmest of winds and rain to force a societal retreat behind our own front doors, the word ennui springs to mind. The muddle of displeasure is pierced when Natalia hands me a large bulbous glass of a liquid I do not recognise.



Britain’s lamentable exit

On the eve of Britain’s official departure from the EU, my partner and I decided to explore a small town on the Italian Riviera where thewintry cold doesn’t feel so much like cold war bite.

I had warned my significant other that I would be having an inverse departure party, a release of the sanity valve if you like!


Sitting inside the ancient castle walls inside the town of Soave, a short drive from Verona in northern Italy, the unique slightly almond aroma of the indigenous grape, Garganega, rises gently from my glass. The castle sprawls up the side of an extinct volcano that gives the region its variant soil structures that mark out the better quality of Soave wines.


Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.


The cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the final resting place of Saint James, rises out of the landscape, infested with antiquity. The rambling steep streets give way to shafts of dramatic light, emblazoned chapels, and tightly packed tapas bars, dusty, as old novels pressed together in antiquarian bookshops.


We use cookies to improve our website and your experience when using it. Cookies used for the essential operation of this site have already been set. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

  I accept cookies from this site.
EU Cookie Directive plugin by