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Spanish Food at 1939 World's Fair-Valencia Gardens, Tampa

 
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Rexistrau: 02 Avi 2003
Mensaxes: 56
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MensaxePublicao: Dom Ago 01, 2004 11:41 am    Asuntu: Spanish Food at 1939 World's Fair-Valencia Gardens, Tampa Responder citando

A tidbit for nostalgia buffs....the Florida pavilion at the 1939 World's Fair in New York featured a Spanish theme.

The restaurant there was run by the Valencia Gardens restaurant from Tampa. It was owned by a Gallego, Manuel Beiro. It is still in existence today and the food is quite good. As you can tell from the name, there was a tendency for larger Spanish restaurants to conform to the "post-card" stereotype of Spain....mediterranean names and architecture,etc...rather than reflecting the heritage of the owners, which were primarily Asturiano and Gallego here in Tampa...probably made good business sense.

The menus were/are usually Spanish and Cuban-Spanish (paella, arroz con pollo,etc) with some regional influences...Caldo Gallego, Fabada etc.

The restaurant at the fair was quite popular and some observers have said that it was probably the first large-scale introduction of Spanish (as opposed to Mexican or Latin-American) food to the US public. Apparently, because the Spanish Civil War had just concluded, there was an intense interest in a country/culture most Americans new very little about, Spain having been in the international news for several years prior to the fair's opening.
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Tony Carreno/Tampa Florida
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