“With every step in cooking, taste your food,” Chef Javier Marcos says to the cooking class at La Taberna del Alabardero. Participants attentively watch as Chef Cesar Mayorga chops, mixes, stirs and cooks fresh ingredients together resulting in three authentic Spanish dishes.

Once a month, La Taberna del Alabardero hosts a cooking class on cooking authentic paella and tapas. Participants sip on complementary sangria or wine as they learn how to prepare popular dishes to the Spanish culture. On June 12, a group learned how to prepare salmorejo cordobes con jamon y huevo, tortilla de patata tradicional, fish broth and “sofrito” and arroz negro .

DC local and first-time cooking class participant Chuck Madel said that his experience was very informative since he was able to ask questions and of course, taste the food.

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La Taberna del Alabardero Cooking Class | Photo Credit: Chad Jimenez

“My office used to be one block away and [La Taberna del Alabardero] is one of our favorite restaurants since it opened,” Madel said. “I grew up with a lot of Spanish-influenced dishes and this is the first and one of the major Spanish restaurants here. And believe me, before [La Taberna del Alabardero], I don’t think people in DC knew what paella was.”

Madel said he is excited to take what he has learned from Chef Marcos and Chef Mayorga and try to cook paella at home.

“In my case, I came here with an open mind and I wanted to enjoy it,” Madel said. “I don’t know if people should come here with a very technical view of how to cook. As Javier said, a lot of it is about the feel and art of the food.”

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Participants were given the recipes they learned how to prepare as well as complimentary rice and paprika the chefs used that evening. They were also given a diploma at the end, stating that they “demonstrated competence, passion and love for the art.”

La Taberna del Alabardero has many restaurants throughout Spain and have been open at their only US location in DC for 28 years.

Cooking classes are 160 dollars and includes wine, sangria, ingredients and materials. For more information on future cooking classes, visit alabardero.com

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