Writing about the Basque cheesecake from the La Viña Restaurant so often is one of those things we love doing, because it brings together so many elements that, for us, are so relevant, and so positive.

Firstly, it’s because we’re once again referencing an article from the Condé Nast Traveler website, which is one of the most important travel and lifestyle magazines in the world.  It is they who are speaking about this restaurant and this cheesecake because San Sebastian has been selected by their readers as “the best city for dining.”

Secondly, it’s because, in order to find a leading restaurant in such a foodie city, they didn’t go to one of the restaurants that can be found in every leading guidebook, the ones normally considered the can’t-miss places.  That’s not to say that would have been a bad thing; perhaps it would have even been more logical.  But no.  Instead, they cover the “humble” cheesecake created in 1988 at La Viña, a small bar-restaurant in the Old Town that has gone on to become one of the most famous cheesecakes in the world.

As far as our experience and criteria are concerned, this culinary delight has been responsible for the second greatest number of instances of the word “Basque” to be found online, topped only by Basque soccer.  Though, if we focus on Asia, we’re 100% sure that there is more buzz about the cheesecake than about all our first-division soccer teams.  The only exception might be Japan, where things are closer, because in addition to all the reference to the cake, including recipes, variants, shops where it’s sold, etc, the arrival of Japanese player Takefusa Kubo to Real Sociedad has made references to Basque soccer have shot up.

Thirdly, it’s because the article’s author is an old friend to the blog, who we truly appreciate: Marti Buckley, whom we’ve spoken about on many occasions.  This grants is a double guarantee, because we know it will be a quality article, and we know the author knows us, and understands our way of doing things.  We could say that it’s like playing with a home-team player.  Well, maybe her first line could have been “in a minuscule bar in the small coastal town of San Sebastián in the Basque Country,” but that’s just us.

Fourthly, it’s because in this interview/article, everyone is going to learn something new about Basque cheesecake.  We most certainly did: everything from where it was born to how La Viña managed to create a burned cheesecake that doesn’t get burned!

Truly an article worth reading.

Condé Nast Traveler – 4/10/2023 – USA

The true story behind the burnt Basque cheesecake

When you think of internet virality or A-list stardom, a pudding is not the first thing that typically comes to mind. The burnt Basque cheesecake, however, has reached every corner of the globe, from the pages of the New York Times to the Cheesecake Factory menu. But it got its start in a minuscule bar in the small coastal town of San Sebastián, Spain.

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Header photo: the tiny kitchen at this minuscule bar/restaurant in the Old Town of San Sebastian, where the Basque cheesecake that has taken over the world was born. (photo by Cecilia Alvarez-Hevia Arias)

Last Updated on Feb 12, 2024 by About Basque Country

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