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The Gastronomic La Vila


Gastronomy is an important part of La Vila Joiosa cultural identity. It is in did, a major tourist attraction, essential for the local economy as well . In order to improve La Vila Joiosa gastronomic value, the Town Council created the brand "La Vila Gastronómica". This brand organizes several events and activities in order to to promote the gastronomy of La Vila Joiosa, especially its three main areas: fishing, chocolate and restaurants.

These promotional actions, which are carried out throughout the year, also represent the spirit of Vila gastronomy, since at different times of the calendar there are recipes, products or gastronomic traditions that define our identity. In the month of March we celebrate the Mostra de cuina marinera, the G for Tapas in May, the Pebrereta Contest in the month of June, Ví Festival in September, Arròs Week in October, Xocolatíssima in November.

"La Vila Gastronómica" has become a seal of quality, after almost two decades of experience,. This brand, together with the great professionalism of the restaurateurs and the quality of our products, has placed La Vila Joiosa on the Valencian and Spanish gastronomic map .

In 2001 was held the first edition of the Mostra de Cuina Marinera, an event that was the beginning and origin of all the proposals for the promotion of gastronomy developed under the banner of "La Vila Gastronómica".

Some Michelin stars such as Santi Santamaría, Susi Díaz, Ricard Camarena, Quique Dacosta, Sergi Arola, Mª José San Roman, Joan Roca, Juan Luis Aduriz...have prepared special menus to open or close the event. However, the real essence of "La Mostra'' lies in the menus that the restaurants of La Vila Joiosa prepare specifically for these days, which highlight and promote our products, our traditional seaside cuisine and our cultural identity.

Traditional recipes and new culinary techniques become one for a few days, when we find from traditional dishes to new gastronomic concepts, from ancestral techniques to the most leading and modern ones. All proposals with fish and seafood from the bay in a leading role.

The wide variety of restaurants, and the quality of their chefs, give us the opportunity to experience traditional cuisine and/or contemporary and avant-garde cuisine. La Mostra de Cuina Marinera de La Vila Joiosa is an event that demonstrates the richness and resilience of our gastronomic heritage, and the commitment, solvency and potential of the restaurants in La Vila Joiosa.

La Mostra inaugurates the events calendar of "La Vila Gastronómica" and after more than 20 editions is, with no doubt, a reference point, a meeting point for gourmets and lovers of good food in Alicante region.

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There are dry, mellow and soupy rices. With meat, vegetables and/or fish. There are traditional and contemporary ones. There are... a thousand varieties to suit all, or almost all, tastes. In addition to its many possibilities of preparation, rice, the Rice Culture, is very present in the popular recipes of La Vila Joiosa.

Rice dishes are deeply rooted in the cuisine of La Vila, that is why La Vila's restaurateurs and the town council decided in 2011 to create the Setmana de l'Arròs (Rice Week). An event that comes with La Vila gastronómica already consolidated as a seal of quality after a decade of exemplary journey with the Mostra de Cuina Marinera (Seafood Cuisine Festival).

In addition, this rice week, with a more flexible format than the Mostra, allows more restaurants to participate, thus offers a more complete image of the wide range of gastronomic options in the municipality. Demonstrating, once again, that the rich and varied gastronomy of La Vila is one of the most dynamic elements of its economy, as it is one of the main tourist attractions of the municipality.

During the Setmana de l'Arròs the restaurants participating in the event present a menu whose main dish is rice. A proposal with starters, main course and dessert that allows us, at popular prices, to get closer to La Vila’s cuisine and especially to the versatility of such an essential food.

Summer invites us to share with friends and family great evenings and dinners outdoors on the terraces, beaches... In La Vila Joiosa evenings “la pebrereta” is always on the tables. It is the most popular traditional dish, and its main ingredient is the local pumpkin "calabaza vilera".

At the beginning of the 90s, the festival committee of Poble Nou neighbourhood decided to introduce a cooking competition of this traditional dish into its programme of events. Eventually this “Concurs de Pebrereta”, held at the beginning of June, has become one of the most popular cooking competitions in La Vila Joiosa.

While the cooks-competitors prepare the Pebrereta, with the ingredients provided by the organisers: green peppers, tomatoes, garlic, pumpkin, sweet paprika and santgatxo (a part of the tuna, preserved in salt and originally with little commercial value), the groups of friends and entertainers share snacks and a giant pebrereta with all visitors who come along to share the evening.

This competition, as well as being a gastronomic event, is a deeply-rooted celebration that brings together hundreds of locals in the Plaça de la Llum, a charming little square in the neighbourhood, to enjoy an evening full of music, fun and good food.

The Concurs de Pebrereta gives us the opportunity to visit La Vila Joiosa and share an experience full of tradition, flavour and festivity.

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Chocolate is one of the most emblematic products of La Vila Joiosa and, in order to promote it, the town council, together with the local chocolate brands, celebrates it every summer with Xocolatíssima.

Xocolatíssima has become the most popular sweet event of the summer season, especially for visitors, as it is held in mid-August. For a few days, free activities are organised to promote chocolate: pastry workshops, cooking courses, visits to chocolate factories, outdoor cinema...

The main event of Xocolatíssima is a great popular chocolatada held in the old town, accompanied by traditional dances, music…, actualy , an authentic and very sweet celebration of local chocolate.

In the last few years, together with the celebration of Xocolatíssima, the Old Town also hosts the fair "Comarqualitat" (Region-quality). Where is possible to find samples of products of the different municipalities of the Marina Baixa, our region. For a few days La Vila Joiosa, as the capital of the region, becomes the best display and point of sale for local products from every municipality, together with the celebration of many activities such as workshops and tastings.

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The Mostra del Vi Mediterrani (a wine exhibition) was born as a complementary activity to the Mostra de Cuina Marinera, but the large number of visitors and wineries involved, gave it its own identity, although always under the umbrella of "La Vila Gastronómica".

With the Mostra del Vi, La Vila's gastronomy dresses up to celebrate a real festival for the senses. A very special evening, on the shores of the Mediterranean, where we can taste dozens of sweet, dry, sparkling, red, white and vermouth wines... The sommeliers and experts from the different wineries share with the partcipants the characteristics and goodness of their wines while music plays and the local restaurants serve tapas at popular prices.

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