There it is. So innocent looking. Saliva inducing. Juicy lobster, resting atop cava aioli, on perfectly toasted bread. This pintxo has won the hearts of many, along with a permanent place on the menu at one of San Sebastián's bars of note, Zeruko.
And I don't know if, in good conscience, I can ever taste it again.
Last night, I engaged in a good old-fashioned pintxo hop with some friends. One of our stops was Zeruko, and a moment of 'this can't be happening' came about when they brought us the bill. This sweet, innocent piece of bread?
€7.50. In US dollars, that is $9.75. For a piece of bread, measuring about 4.5 inches long and 2 inches wide. I know it's lobster, but come ON.
This brings about the bigger question: WHAT THE F@#$?
No, kidding. The bigger question is: What is happening to San Sebastián? This small snippet of a night out in the old town is a hint, I beileve, of what's to come. Prices keep going up, bars cater to a world of weekending gabachos (French) and summering tourists. With every newspaper article raving about this hidden gem, every English menu, every time you're asked to pay before you finish eating, Donosti (that's San Sebastián, to locals) becomes more Disney-fied. It's normal, inevitable, even. And it's good for the economy, one supposes. I feel trite complaining about this, but it's how I feel and I am just thankful to have been here before the pintxos hit the fan. When Donosti was still slightly authentic.
BUT SERIOUSLY. $10 FOR A PINTXO? WHAT IS THIS, NEW YORK? I DON'T KNOW IF I CAN EVER GO BACK THERE.
(sheds a tiny tear)
Please comment below. Am I unreasonable? Equivocated? Romantic? Spoiled? Want to hear what everyone thinks about this.