Spanish cuisine is only brisk walk away from campus

Students were immersed in the Spanish culture for an evening during “Taste of: Spain” on April 24 at La Rambla on Third Street in McMinnville.

La Rambla is a street mall in Barcelona, Spain. The local restaurant serves Spanish cuisine with a northwest twist.

La Rambla’s menu changes on a seasonal basis. Currently, it features dishes with diverse ingredients that combine to create fitting flavors. For example, one of the salads is made with baby spinach, apples and ham.

The meal commenced with tapas, which are not similar to American appetizers. La Rambla has cold tapas, such as salted almonds, marinated olives, roasted beets and an assortment of cheeses. Hot tapas include grilled cauliflower, stuffed mushrooms, steamed clams, sautéed garlic shrimp, spice-rubbed steak and seared duck breast. Tapas will sometimes account for an entire meal in certain bars in Spain.

A unique part of the menu is La Rambla paella. It is a large dish originating from Valencia, a state in Spain, made with rice with shrimp, clams, chorizo, green beans, peppers, onion and saffron. Patrons can order a large or small serving of paella to share with a group.

“I had learned about the Spanish dish paella in my high school Spanish class and it was fun to be able to try it,” Carey said.

For desserts, La Rambla offers churros, almond or chocolate tortes, vanilla custard, orange flan, apple bread pudding and ice cream with salted almond caramel or chocolate sauce.

Students reviewed that La Rambla’s prices are not too high, although it is a classy restaurant.

“The restaurant was pretty upscale in my opinion. The lighting was pretty dim, and there were candles on the tables,” Carey said.

Students enjoyed the decorations, although the music did not contribute to the atmosphere.

“It is pretty dark and well decorated,” senior Nora Burnfield said. “The bar is really neat looking. The music, however, doesn’t really match the Spanish theme.”

Wildcats who participate in the “Taste Of” trips say they provide new tastes and opportunities, which is always a positive experience.

“For people who are interested in learning about other countries and cultures, the “Taste of” trips give them the chance to do so in a fun and really inexpensive way,” Carey said.


Carrie Skuzeski/Culture editor

Carrie Skuzeski can be reached at