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“We love Catacurian!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Catacurian

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Catacurian
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43737 Gratallops, Spain   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Gratallops
Wilmington, North Carolina
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“We love Catacurian!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2014

Our experience with Alicia and Jonathan at Catacurian was exceptional! From the moment we landed at the airport, Alicia's silver van swipes us off our feet and we on way to her lovely home. Each day started with a nice breakfast and a planned out morning, which included over the course of the 6 days: wineries, a monastary, an architectural walk with guide in Reus, a guided tour of Gaudi's museum, a visit to a market, wineries, olive oil tastings, one lunch at a tradicional tapas bar, and back to the house for lunch, a break from 3-6 and then preparation for dinner at 6:15. Cooking was not laborious - but a lot of fun with wine and appetizers throughout.
Always, wines paired with food. Great fun and stimulating. I loved the intimacy of the house and getting to know Alicia and her family. We can't wait to return!!

Room Tip: We had the top floor (3 floors) with twin beds pushed to make 1. Full bathroom. Spacious.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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28 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Christchurch, New Zealand
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

We did the 6 day course in October and would highly recommend the cooking School. Alicia and her partner Jonathan were very hospitable. Alicia was an extremely talented cook and educator. The food we had was truly spectacular, with an emphasis on fish and seafood at the time we attended. Alicia really did only use the best quality, organic ingredients. The very small town of El Masroig was extremely quiet, but the cooking school accommodation itself was very high quality. All the excursions we did were well organised and worthwhile. This cooking school will give you real insights into the Catalan way of life. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, WA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013

Our day with Jonathan and Alicia visiting a local winery and then experiencing an Alicia-led cooking class was not only the highlight of our 2-week visit to Spain, it was one of the best vacation experiences we've had, ever.

In addition to a quality winery visit and a very instructive and enjoyable cooking class, Jonathan and Alicia accommodated our group of eight and on a day they usually don't do classes (my wife and I plus our friends, their two daughters and their hubbies - basically one family group). The day was also our friend's birthday and J and A went over and above to make the day special.

As a family "unit" we love to cook, we love wine, and now we love Spain - due in large part to our experience with Catacurian. We're already saving for our next trip to Spain - maybe during olive harvest time? Now THAT would be a great trip...

Room Tip: Although we didn't stay with Jonathan and Alicia - we saw the facilities and would gladly stay w...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013 via mobile

Our journey in Catalunya continued, we have tried more than 10 restaurants in various cities and only one got close to the food quality we have experienced with Alicia, let alone none provided the personal touch. We are not the only one spoiled by the gourmet and wine experience, Ethan, our 3 year old son, now started saying he wants to visit Aunty Alicia again...

After having the first cooking lesson 4 years ago in BCN, we have decided to come back learning more serious cooking. We found Catacurian amongst a few options but it was the only one shown genuine hospitality to our cooking passion despite we are traveling with a little boy. We were not very sure if we have found the best bargin for a cooking class, until after the first evening we realized that question wasn't relevant, since what Catacurian offers is not just a cooking class but an unique opportunity to live, exchange and inspire mutually with a family, both the high quality food, wine and the philosophy behind them enlightened us... a priceless life experience!

For those who haven't fried an egg before, we did not spend much time on how to cut chicken or beef nor how to peel union, instead we learnt what we don't often get from other classes: how to preserve the freshness of mussel and mushroom; How to prepare potato for best taste. We discussed principle of using nutrition to balance the body which works better than medicine, we learnt how a biodynamic corp are grown and appreciated. The wine and olive tasting were uniquely presented, a grape, vineyard and life story we did not experience elsewhere and most fun of all... Alicia is a born kid teacher with discipline. Ethan learnt some good behavior on top of smashing Picada!

We will come back in future and thanks Alicia, Jonathan to present us such amazing life experience. We are inspired!

Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
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Minnesota
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013

My husband and I spent two weeks in Barcelona during May 2013. As part of the planning for the trip, my husband requested that I find an opportunity to take a cooking lesson so that he could improve his paella making skills. After reviewing numerous classes offered in Barcelona, I concluded that the best class was not in Barcelona, but with Catacurian, two hours away in El Masroig.
We took a regional express train from the Sants station. After traveling about an hour south along the coast, the train headed inland. We departed the train at the Marca-Falset station and were greeted by Alicia. After being joined by another couple, Alicia drove us a few minutes away to the Costers del Siurana winery, which is in the Priorat area. We spent a delightful hour and a half touring the operations and tasting the fabulous wines produced by Carles Pasrana and his wife. Carles is a knowledgeable and entertaining host and we highly recommend their wine.
With the warm glow of great wine coursing through us (and two bottles purchased for future enjoyment), Alicia drove us to the small, mountaintop village that is the location of her family home. She and her partner have renovated the historic home and turned it into a charming and comfortable cooking school/bed and breakfast. There are three guests rooms, a sitting room, dining room, and spacious teaching kitchen. In sum, a perfect setup for teaching groups of six or fewer students. (The small class size, in addition to the great reviews, were why we chose this program.)
Our menu and instruction included: a tomato sorbet, a Catalan tortilla, paella, and a Crema Catalana. Alicia guided us through the preparation of each dish, explaining the history of some of the dishes and demonstrating techniques that were appropriate to each step of the preparation. She is a warm, welcoming host and instructor. After we prepared the food, we sat down to eat the fruits of our labor, accompanied by great wine.
We were sorry to come to the end of the afternoon. Our one-day experience left us wishing we had planned more time with Alicia at Catacurian!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Markham, Canada
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

A Stay at Catacurian- September 2012

A warm & hospitable cooking school in the village of El Mosraig about 140 Kim's south west of Barcelona. Alicia, the owner has taken her grandparents old home & converted it to a home with all the modern amenities. Ensuites attached to each of the three guest rooms, a large guest common room with balcony overlooking her garden, as well as a dining room, kitchen & wine cellar, absolutely lovely.

Catacurian is advertised as a cooking school. I think of it as a great introduction to Catalunyan ( I didn't write Catalan for a reason. You will have to go to find out why.) culture & food. Alicia's not a formally trained chef, but she did learn the art of Catalunyan cooking from her grandmother & gramma taught her very well. For those looking to improve their hands-on culinary skills they will be disappointed, as you will be relegated to chopping the odd onion or green pepper.For the foodie voyeurs in the crowd, happy to eat & not wanting to improve their knife skills, you will be ecstatic. Iberian ham, a variety of paellas,veal & wild mushrooms, all made with seasonal locally sourced products & produce, with each lunch & dinner accompanied by wines from wine cellars in the two local appellations, El Priorat & Montsant.

You have a warm & hospitable host, & her wonderful assistant Maite, in a beautiful home, in a quiet village & you are drinking good wines and dining on delicious food. Can you guild the lily? Yes you can. Ensure your stay provides for a wine tour of several local cellars. From the husband & wife team who run Ficaria Vins, producing a mere 8500 bottles a year ( Do not leave without taking home several bottles of Pater, his premium wine) from grapes grown on vines planted by his grandfather over 100 years ago, to the cooperative at El Mosraig which will bottle this year more than a million bottles of wine. Take advantage of the deal of a life time at the co-op by buying 2 litres of young wine for a 1.30 Euros. You have had $20.00 bottles of wine that were no where as high a quality as this.
Go, stay & enjoy

David O'Gorman, Also Known as "The Godfather of Consuelo"

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2012

Catacurian is just the type of experience that one longs for when traveling - a glimpse into the kitchen and markets of Catalunya. Alicia welcomed us into her very comfortable home, fed us, taught us traditional Catalan techniques in the kitchen, nourished and enriched our lives. We left with new knowledge and new friends and a very happy stomach! In Barcelona we experienced delicious tapas and some wonderfully creative high-end restaurants but nothing compared to Alicia's home cooking. This was a vacation worth repeating.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Catacurian

Address: 43737 Gratallops, Spain
Location: Spain > Catalonia > Province of Tarragona > Gratallops
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Gratallops
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
3 to 6-Day Cooking & Wine vacations, and 1-Day classes, teaching Gourmet Catalan Cooking and the Appreciation of Priorat / Montsant Wines and Olive Oils in Casual Elegance. Privately owned and operated with two locations in Barcelona and in El Priorat, Spain ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Catacurian Hotel El Masroig

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