Tapas and Pinchos: Differences and similarities

Tapas are one of the elements of the Spanish gastronomy better known and prized worldwide and they have become a sign of the Spanish identity. But Tapas have a very close relative coming from the Vasque Country, less known out of the Spanish borders, but very similar as to their way of consumption: Pinchos.

Examples of Pinchos.

Examples of Pinchos.

Both Tapas and Pinchos (also called Pintxos, which is the word used in Euskera language) are small portions of food which are served in the bars along with a drink.

There is also a particular and common way of consumption which gives rise to the verb “Tapear”. This verb comes from the habit existing in many Spanish places that consist on going out with friends to a bar to take a snack and a beer or a glass of wine, and then going to a different bar to try more Tapas or Pinchos. This practice has progressively replaced many lunches and diners, becoming a new way of sharing the wide variety of Spanish gastronomy with friends and relatives.

Different types of Tapas

Different types of Tapas

However, in spite of the evident similarities, Tapas and Pinchos are easily distinguishable. First, the Royal Language Spanish Academy gives us the following definitions:

– Tapas: small portion of food served as accompaniment of a drink.

-Pincho: portion of food taken as snack, that sometimes is pierced with a toothpick.

But in addition to their definition, the main difference is that a Tapas requires utensils to be eaten, while a Pincho uses to be smaller and with less ingredients, and most of the times includes a toothpick that joins all the ingredients.

Furthermore, Tapas are usually a snack without any additional cost. On the opposite, Pinchos are not included in with the drink price, therefore traditionally bartenders used the number of used toothpicks by each group of customers to calculate the bill.

Now that you know the difference between both, just have to take a look to our shop to find the very best Spanish products. With a little imagination you will be able to prepare some premium Pinchos as the best Basque tavern, or some sophisticated Tapas worthy to be in some of the most famous tapas bar.