Things to buy in León Typical products from LeónTypical products from León:
León offers authentic delicacies for the senses. Products such as cold cuts, cheeses, honey, wines and pastries that are a must in your suitcase when you return home. We provide details about each one so that you know what to buy in León. The part and parcel of a trip is clearly the food. Therefore, when visiting places where good
food is the essence, as in León, this becomes crucial. That is why it is important to know in advance what typical things you should buy in León so that you can try them and take them home with you.
Cecina and chorizo from León
One quintessential product from the province of León is the dried beef meat called cecina. Cecina is nothing more than cured beef (in the case of cecina leones from the animal hindquarters. Cecina de León has its own Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) which ensures the quality standards of this prestigious product. The production process takes 7 to 2 months, from the cutting and shaping to the smoking and final curing.
Cecina stands out for its flavour and its characteristic aroma, very different from that of ham. Chorizo from León is also another star product from the province. This well-known Spanish product has in León one of its star places, with a large number of producers and a guarantee Chorizo de León brand that protects it.
In León, you can buy cecina and chorizo in shops such as La Casa del Embutido, Embutidos Ezequiel, La Cilla de Feito and A Cuchillo.
León geography makes it a favourable environment for producing quality honey. Bee- keeping has become a booming sector in recent years, with the inclusion of young people a strong development in the province of León. Today, honey is one of the star products of León gastronomy.
Most of the honey from León is forest honey, mainly from oak, holm oak, broom, heather or even strawberry tree honey, which is less common but more exclusive and is produced in El Bierzo. León is considered one of the best areas in Europe for producing quality honey. You can find and buy honey from León in many shops and supermarkets throughout the province.
Another star product from León is cheese, with large cheese dairies producing different varieties. One of the most renowned is Valdeón cheese, from the municipality of Posada de Valdeón, in the heart of the Picos de Europa mountain range. This blue cheese, whose origins are pre-Romanesque, is made from goatand cow milk and is characterised by its strong flavour and high fat content.
Valdeón cheese has its own PGI Queso Azul de Valdeón certification that aims to guarantee the quality of this unique product.
Botillo from El Bierzo
Botillo is a typical sausage from north-western Spain that has its own PGI in El Bierzo called Botillo del Bierzo. It is made from pieces of pork offal that are seasoned and stuffed into the so-called caecum, a piece of the pig large intestine, which gives it its characteristic shape.
The region of El Bierzo is the true paradise of the botillo. Every town in the region, from Ponferrada to Balboa, has festivities to celebrate the area most famous product. The National Botillo Exaltation Festival has been held in the village of Bembibre since 1972; this gastronomic festival has more than 1,000 diners.
Wine is also a must in the list of products from León. The province has two wine appellations, i.e. DO Bierzo and DO Tierra de León. In total, there are more than 6,000 hectares of vineyards with varieties such as Mencía, Garnacha, Merenzao and Prieto Picudo among the reds, and Godello, Doña Blanca, Palomino, Verdejo, Albarín Blanco and Malvasía among the whites.
The Bierzo wine appellation extends along the Sil river valley and has white, claret, rosé and red wines from more than 70 wineries and 4,000 winegrowers.
The Tierra de León wine appellation is located in the south-east of the province, as well as in certain areas of the neighbouring provinces of Zamora and Valladolid. It is a smaller and younger appellation, with around 30 wineries and some 400 winegrowers. As you can see, travelling around the province of León will also help you explore wine tourism in this part of Spain, visiting wineries and tasting some of the excellent wines produced there.
Local cakes and pastries
Cakes and pastries are a must in León. Some of León's desserts are well known and well received beyond the province borders.
One of the sweetest places in the province of León is clearly Astorga thanks to its famous puff pastries and mantecadas de Astorga (sponge cupcakes), which carry the name of the capital of the Maragatería region throughout the rest of Spain. Another very sweet town in León is La Bañeza which, with its imperiales (almond biscuits) and yemas (sugared egg yolk), is part of our particular selection of sweet desserts. Continuing with our list, in León you can try frisuelos (crepes), also found in Asturias and Cantabria; nicanores from Boñar (very sweet puff pastries typical of this small town in León); and rosquillas de San Froilán (ring-shaped pastries typical of the Saint Froilán festivities in the province capital). As usual with cakes and pastries, their names do not tell us much, so the best thing to do is
travel to León and try them yourself.
Where to stay in the city of León
After this sumptuous meal, all you can do is rest and relax. The best thing to do is relax in one of the hotels that Barceló has in the centre of León.
In the heart of the city centre, you will find the Barceló León Conde Luna and the Occidental León Alfonso V, two excellent hotels with a modern style and a four-star rating. The Barceló León Conde Luna has two restaurants where you can enjoy the best of León's gastronomy. We hope that, after reading this article, you will be hungry and know what to buy in León to eat!
Frequently Asked Questions
What typical products from León should I buy during my visit?
When buying products from León, you must buy cecina, a second cold cut such as botillo or
chorizo, a Valdeón cheese, some of its wines and, of course, a dessert or two, whether the
mantecadas from Astorga, the yemas from La Bañeza or the nicanores from Boñar.
What are the typical pastries from León?
In León you will find numerous typical pastries, among them the puff pastries and
mantecadas from Astorga, the imperiales and yemas from La Bañeza, the nicanores from
Boñar, the frisuelos and the rosquillas of San Froilán.
What wines can I buy in León?
In León you can buy wines from the Bierzo and Tierra de León appellations. The most
famous wines from the area are the Mencía (red) and Godello (white).