Tapas, tapas, tapas, Spanish tapas! For our readers who not sure what tapas are, let us show you a new world of amazing eats! For the most part, “tapas” now simply means snack or small plates with small portions. Restaurants have tapas for patrons in order to sample several delectable appetizer-size dishes of their choice. This way everyone can taste entrée samples to ensure a completely satisfactory eating experience. Tapas can be served cold or hot, just depends on the dish and the culture serving the plates. The most authentic ordering of tapas comes straight from the original--the land of España. In Spain, dinner is customarily served between the hours and 9pm and 11pm which means there is plenty of time to snack while you relax after your hard day of work. So Spaniards go tapas hopping! Tapas encourage socializing for those not focused on a full meal, and some cultures even stand while eating so it's easier to move around and talk. Instead of happy hour, the Spanish have tapas hour!
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The origin of "tapas" from old world Spain is derived from the verb "tapar", which means "to cover", and Andalucían drinkers would use pieces of meat or bread to cover their drinks in between sips. And of course, the more they drank, the hungrier they got, so tavern owners began to create dishes to satisfy their patrons. This has evolved over the years with the integration of other cultures farming methods, crops, and spices. Now many restaurants in Spain offer a complimentary tapa with your drink order or have a buffet-style serving of different appetizer options that you serve yourself. From that original slice of bread used to cover a drink of sherry, to the ever-changing tapa cuisine of today, the century-old tradition still stands and has become a defining piece of the Spanish culture.