What is the origin of “tapas”

“Tapas” is that small dish very common in Spain. Usually “tapas” are eaten standing in a bar, and you order them together with your wine or beer.

The origin is quite unknown but there is an anecdote of the King Alfonso XIII (1886-1941) when he was travelling to Cadiz. The King decided to stop in a beach restaurant.

The King Alfonso XIII ordered a cup of Sherry wine, but did not realize about the wind outside that was coming into the restaurant, and could mess with beach sand his wine cup. A clever waiter had the idea of covering (“tapar” in Spanish) the wine cup with a ham slice.

When the King was going to drink it, he asked: “what is this?”. The waiter answered: “Sorry, My King, I just put a tapa for not to dirty your wine” . The the King ordered for another wine cup but he said to be covered again with the same tapa. Everybody start to laugh and ordered the same than the King.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.