Segovians are extraordinarily proud of their food and drink heritage. Perhaps you may know that Segovia is famous for being home to a particular Spanish delicacy! 🐷
Segovia has a terrific craft brewing scene, delicious local wine from the Tempranillo grape, as well as local sweets. There is no doubt the most famous dish Segovians are the most prideful of is their beloved roast suckling pig known as cochinillo asado.
Cochinillo is confit suckling pig.
It is considered a sublime delicacy from Segovia in the Castile-Leon region of Spain.
Segovia, a popular city not far from Madrid, is a key destination for foodies who want to sample the famous dish.
In 2017, I blogged about 5 dishes you need to try while visiting Spain. If you’ll be visiting Madrid and/or Segovia, I would absolutely add cochinillo to that list!
Since 1725, Sevogovian cochinillo has been served at the world’s oldest restaurant, Restaurante Botín, located in the city center of Madrid.
Botín has regular cochinillo deliveries from Segovia several times per week.
For any pig to officially be considered “cochinillo,” there are very specific guidelines established which include what the pig can be cooked in. Traditionally, the piglet is roasted as a confit in duck fat.
The guidelines even go as far as specifying what the mother of the suckling pig may be fed!
Dozens of restaurants all compete in Segovia claiming to serve the best cochinillo.
Smells of this Spanish delicacy roasting will greet your nose and tempt your stomach while strolling through Segovia.
The Tour Guy Travel Blog has compiled an excellent list comparing different spots where you can order cochinillo in Segovia.
On average, cochinillo will cost around 27 Euros per person.
I had read good things about Mesón De Cándido and Alma Nostra on Twist Travel Magazine. The travel blog Where Are Those Morgans recommends José Maria Restaurant and Mesón don Jimeno.
My friends and I chose to have dinner at Asador MARIBEL Restauraunte.
To qualify as cochinillo, the piglets need to be milk-fed only, no more than 3 weeks old, and from a mother pig who adheres to a very strict diet. It’s no wonder cochinillo from Segovia is famous all over Spain!
Sometimes a ceramic plate will be used to cut apart the pig to showcase its tenderness.
Our visit to Asador Maribel was lovely! We tried patatas panaderas (which you can see in the video below after the waitor serves us individual plates of cochinillo!) 🤩
In addition to patatas panaderas (Spanish potatoes with olive oil), we also tried:
- Cochinillo (of course!) – Cochinillo Asado en Horno de Leña
- Salad – Ensalada de la huerta
- High-quality sliced cured ham – Jamón Ibérico de Bellota al corte
For dessert, we ordered another famous Segovian treat: Ponche Segoviano.
Ponche Segoviano is a traditional dessert from Segovia that consists of several fine layers of sponge cake filled with egg yolk and topped with marzipan!
My travel blogging friend Rebecca from Rebecca Goes Rendezvous does a great job detailing how delicious the food in Segovia is.
Along with the ponche, they served us a digestif. Although I’m not entirely sure what it consisted of, it reminded me a lot of Baileys Irish Cream.
During my very first visit to Spain in 2016, I learned that Spaniards eat all parts of the pig. It’s sort of a running joke that in Spain, no part of the pig goes to waste!
What I had not realized until my visit to Segovia was the level of complexity, skill, and regulation that can go into preparing a single type of dish! Cochinillo is a delicacy in the truest sense!
Naturally, I was so blown away by the food in Segovia that I purchased my very first cookbook before leaving the city! One of the very few souvenirs I can say I have purchased while traveling.
A note: I want to give special thanks to my great friends from Madrid who all made this day trip possible. To Kiyoko & Enol who kindly offered to drive me there in their car, acted as tour guides, offered stellar recommendations, and also to Satomi who made the day very enjoyable while touring! This trip took place during a very difficult time in my life so I was beyond grateful for the kindness you all showed me.
If you have been to Segovia, what did you think of the cochinillo there? Was there one specific restaurant you ate at that you’d highly recommend to others? Let us know in the comments! 😃
More wonderful food from your travels. My sister went to Spain once many years ago and said the food was fantastic. Not sure if she tried this. Have you tried out recipes from your book yet?
Oh, you should absolutely ask her!! 🙂 I hope she was able to try it. Regarding the recipe book, hahaha, not yet… 😅 Even though I haven’t tried yet, I very much do intend to attempt some eventually!
Your experience is reminiscent of mine in Segovia when I visited in 2019! I ate cochinillo at Restaurante Jose María, along with the ponche segoviano. The cochinillo was delicious, but very indulgent, as it’s super fatty– definitely stick-to-your-ribs good! I wrote about my time there before, if you’d like a read! https://rebeccagoesrendezvous.wordpress.com/2020/02/19/destination-segovia-spain/
Thank you for sharing your post so I could check it out too! I enjoyed that. It sounds like you had a great visit to Segovia as well! I added a reference to your post up in the content! I really liked how you described the popular foods there. 😀