Lunch in Plaza Major
Staying in a hotel at Plaza Major, we were in a prime location. But I learnt that you didn't have to be in the centre of all the action to find a really good feed.
Mandala at Calle de Serranos 9, Salamanca
Near the University of Salamanca is Mandala, by far my favourite place to eat in Salamanca. Now if you've never been to Spain, at lunchtime people are normally offered a 'Menu of the Day'. On the menu of the day, there are a variety of starter, main and dessert options, and you can choose one of all three for an extremely reasonable price (often around 10-15 euros). While eating three courses in the middle of the day is not something I regularly experience, it seemed the norm - so why not. But no wonder people need to have an afternoon siesta.
Mandala had a fantastic menu of the day and for a vegetable lover (like myself) it was one of the few Spanish establishments with a decent number of salads and vegetarian dishes. So when you're over the meat, seafood and more meat, I strongly recommend Mandala... although they do have meat too.
Black rice at Mandala - delicious
To be honest, I'm not sure exactly what I ate most of the time because I really struggled with Spanish menus, but our openness to experience often paid off and we had some fantastic food.
Dessert at Mandala
Also near the University of Salamanca is Don Quijote, a multi-level cafe/restaurant with a less inspiring menu of the day but they offer free Wi-Fi.
Though I initially struggled when dining in Spain, mostly due to my inability to read the menus properly, the longer we stayed the better our meal choices got. So our first visit to Meson Cervantes in Plaza Major wasn't a brilliant success...
...but on our second visit we discovered fried goats cheese with honey - amazing!
Our third visit was a bit bazarre - a prawn pasta dish with many different types of pasta, definitely a new experience for me - but still enjoyable. And the view of the Plaza was always captivating.
People in Salamanca seem to enjoy three things: sleeping, shopping and eating. The clothes were cheap, we napped every day and we ordered more than we could eat. Needless to say, I felt well and truly nourished after our stay in Salamanca.