Forks and Jets

The true story of a couple or amateur foodie travelogues going around the world


Eating on the Honor System

June 7, 2009 Spain


Spain isn’t the easiest place to visit when you’re on a budget and you love to eat. Nearly every window tempts with little tapas, cheap for just a single plate — but who can stop at only one!?

At a normal tapas place it’s easy to restrain yourself after one or two little samples and a beer. Service doesn’t come around too often, preferring to leave you to enjoy your dining company. We rarely know the names of things, so our selection is based on what looks tasty and what we can point to.

But those damn Spaniards found a way to destroy us and our wallets! Take this business model for instance: a cute tiny bar with no seating, just counters all around. Tens of luscious fresh little plates of two-bite Montadito sandwiches. Order a beer, get a plate and go to town. All you have to do is eat, and keep the sticks. At the end you’re charged per each stick, regardless of what you had. Now only a flick of the wrist is necessary to eat, eat, eat. They don’t even give you a place to sit down and savor your morsel, which we don’t doubt is intentional.

Little eels with caviar and pimento next to iberico ham

The winner of the night. Little sardine fillets on top of pimento peppers, topped with hard-boiled egg, tomato and olive.

Stuffed pimentos

Smoked salmon with crab and roe

Anchovy, onion, egg and lettuce

Fresh cheese, an incredible chimichurri, and pimento

At around 1.5E each, the sandwiches weren’t cheap, but weren’t expensive either. The honor system works well here, since we’re only talking about a buck or two in either direction. We’d say future-restauranteurs take note: no one can resist so many beautiful little snacks.


  1. Gillian says:
    June 7, 2009

    Oh. My. God! It all looks so good, no wonder you have trouble stopping!


  2. Danielle says:
    June 7, 2009

    I bet it is hard not to try them all and have seconds on the best ones.


  3. I Make Thousands of Dollars a Month Posting Links on Google from Home says:
    June 8, 2009

    Hey, nice post, very well written. You should write more about this.


  4. jen laceda says:
    June 9, 2009

    Oh, where do you find all these places that the guidebooks can’t? It’s only 11 am here in Toronto…it might be time for lunch…!!


  5. Fan says:
    June 9, 2009

    looks so delicious~

    If you two come to Beijing, just contact me. I will show you some traditional Chinese food~


  6. Saben of "Sabenandlin" says:
    June 11, 2009

    Oh, how I miss tapas… Looks like you guys are having a great time in Spain!


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