, Spain
GAUCÍN: Balcony of the Ronda Mountains where the Holy Child appeared to St. John of God.
The illustrious, always noble, very hospitable village of Gaucín.

setas1211smlMore than 100 participants took part, some coming from as far as Sevilla, Jerez, Coin and Málaga. Upon arrival there was a breakfast of churros and chocolate, or coffee and toast in the bar El Pajuelo, where the organizers divided the group into 7 smaller groups, that then went into various parts of the Gaucin campo to collect the mushrooms. Each group was lead by a gaucineño familiar with the tracks and by-ways of the municipality.

By 2 o´clock the groups reunited at the Plaza and displayed the mushrooms collected. While the experts began to classify the mushrooms according to species and varieties, the participants were treated to a wonderful luncheon in the  mercado de abastos, with paella, the famous  "carne María", and vino mosto from the vineyard of Miguel Calvente.

In the afternoon, Jose Ramón Sogorb Castro, one of the greatest experts of Málaga in mushrooms, and author of one of the best books on mushrooms, explained one by one the characteristics of each species, the edible and the  tóxic. A total of more than 90 species were classified. At 7 p.m. the day ended and participants received a jar of honey from the región.

It was a complete success in participation and collection of species, and is the first time Gaucín has had a Jornada micológica. Thanks are due to all the people who helped and so freely gave of their time and knowledge, above all the many guides who showed the participants the tracks and by-ways of Gaucín.

RideAndGallopGourmet1212In October, the innovative tour began, run by Ride Andalucia and Neil Armstrong, professional chef who gives regular cookery classes at El Nobo. Guests rode out each morning on horseback to find local ingredients and the people who produce them. They baked bread in Paca's bread wood fired oven, Alonso took them round his oranges and avocados in San Pablo, Jose  explained his work with his honey hives, and they rode through the forest where future hams were eating acorns and chestnuts.
After a delicious lunch, sometimes one of Neil's amazing picnics, sometimes in a local venta, the horses relaxed while the no longer galloping gourmets enjoyed cooking demonstrations and lessons from Neil.
Every night they sat down to a magnificent dinner. There were also visits to La Linea fishmarket and Schatz vineyards - a lot to fit in to just one week!
Voted a great success by all the guests, including the English Guardian journalist (article coming out in January.)
There will be two more tours in March. Anyone interested? We also take a small number of non-riders. For information, contact Karen at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
In the photo: making the dough for the wood oven.

RideAndii711smlIn June, Peter Ritz and his Andalucian stallion Corvacero, set out from Gaucin to ride to Germany. After 1,900 kms, and a lot of wonderful (and hair raising!) adventures, Peter decided to have a winter break to avoid the snow. He stashed Corvacero in a stables near Burgos and came back to visit everyone in Gaucín who helped him where it all started.

For his birthday on November 28th, Ride Andalucia took him riding on the old camino to Cortes and back to Bar Chaparro for a birthday lunch. "It is the first birthday in my life ", said Peter "That I have ever sat in the sun outside!" Now he is back to Germany, always looking for sponsorship to fund his endeavours.

Peter and Corvacero will set off again on March 1st 2012.  They have become well known while riding up Spain, Just put 'CORVACERO' into your search engine and you will see the many links that appear.

AlmuaFeria08This year Diana Paget will not hold the annual  Gaucin Christmas Fair in la Almuña, as she has done for the past 15 years. With her blessing, Boníssim will sponsor a Christmas Fair, to be held at the Convento, with many of the same stall holders from the Almuña fair and new additions as well. There will be Christmas gifts and ideas for everyone; lunches, refreshments and Micky´s bar will be there to make your visit more enjoyable. For more information, call Karen at 61772155.

CartelJornadaMicolgica111The day starts at 9: a.m., with breakfast with churros at the municipal market in Gaucin. At 10 a.m. the group will then leave for the campo to gather the mushrooms. When the mushrooms have been collected, lunch in the campo will follow, from 2 – 4 p.m. At 4 p.m., the species collected will be identified and a talk given by an expert in mushrooms from the Serranía de Ronda and the National Park of the Alcornocales, D. José Ramón Sogord Castro
Participants can take home all the mushrooms they collect after having been identified. It is recommended that participants wear comfortable clothing and adequate shoes, and bring a knife and basket for collecting the mushrooms.
There are 50 places available for this excursion. The price is 20 euro. The fee includes breakfast, lunch, transportation to the campo. The fee should be transferred to Cajamar Account nº 3058 0747 07 2810831120. Applications will be taken until  Monday, 28 November, 2011. For more information: GaucíThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by telephone, 670267233.