I have just returned from a month in Santander Spain and Avignon France. I have just had a most wonderful food experience!!!! A wedding in Spain let me experience the best of Spanish cuisine. Santander is right up north of Spain on the coast so plenty of seafood. Fresh tuna, lobster, squid, cockles, shrimp, fish galore all cooked with the only addition being tomato, garlic or paprika. Tapas and pinchos in abundance and I took a liking to Tinto de Verano (red wine with ice and a slightly sweetened tonic water )
Avignon in France let me enjoy the wonderful full bodied red wine which grew in abundance in the rocky soil. Delicious dishes so fresh just right for the summer heat. Platters with charred peppers, stuffed aubergines, sliced tomatoes with a drizzle of the finest olive oil ,mozzarella and basil, fresh rocket with a simple dressing.
Both Spain and France are proud of the produce they produce and they only use the best quality. This was made obvious by the standards in the markets, where I enjoyed wandering around sampling the beautiful cheeses, figs, cherries etc.