Spain, with its vibrant culture and rich history, is equally celebrated for its exquisite culinary diversity. A star in the Spanish gastronomic universe is its charcuterie, a showcase of cured meats that have been crafted through time-honored traditions. To truly appreciate these delicacies, one must journey through the distinct regions of Spanish charcuterie.

The North: Jamón Serrano’s Homeground

Originating in the mountainous regions, Jamón Serrano, or 'mountain ham,' holds a place of pride in Spain's charcuterie culture. The cooler climate here aids in the extended curing process of this ham, giving it a firm texture and a subtly salty flavor.

Southwest Spain: The Realm of Jamón Ibérico

The Iberian Peninsula's southwestern part, particularly the regions of Extremadura and Andalucía, is where the renowned Jamón Ibérico hails from. This ham is produced from the Black Iberian pig, with its quality further refined by the pig's diet. The acorn-fed variety, Jamón Ibérico de Bellota, boasts a flavor profile that's simultaneously sweet, nutty, and rich, thanks to the acorns and the freedom these pigs have to roam oak forests.

Central Spain: The Heart of Chorizo

The vibrant red hue of Spanish chorizo is unmistakable, with its origin rooted in regions like La Rioja and Castile and León. The paprika (pimentón) gives this cured sausage its iconic color and smoky flavor. Depending on the region and specific recipes, chorizo can range from sweet to spicy.

Catalonia: A Llonganissa Affair

North-eastern Spain, particularly Catalonia, introduces us to 'Llonganissa', a type of cured sausage similar to chorizo but distinct in flavor and preparation. The seasoning, primarily black pepper, and its thinner diameter make it stand out in the vast world of Spanish sausages.

Beyond Regions: Salchichón & Morcilla

No exploration of Spanish charcuterie is complete without mentioning salchichón, a sausage that uses a mix of lean pork and fat, seasoned primarily with salt and black pepper. It can be found throughout Spain, with regional variations. Morcilla, Spain's version of blood sausage, varies notably from region to region, with some versions incorporating rice or onions.


Spanish charcuterie is a reflection of the country's diverse landscapes, climates, and cultures. Each region, with its unique traditions and methods, contributes to an expansive and flavorful charcuterie board. To savor Spanish cured meats is to embark on a journey, one that tells tales of regions, traditions, and passionate artisans dedicated to their craft.

October 26, 2023 — Gabriel Velez Quinones