On New Year's Eve in Spain, there is no ball drop. And no big midnight kiss.

Instead, the clock in the Puerta del Sol of Madrid chimes for the last 12 seconds of the old year. With each chime, you must eat one grape.

Both a Spanish tradition and superstition, it is said that if you finish all of your grapes, you will have 12 months of good luck for the new year. 

Good luck never comes easily though.
Be careful...they have seeds!
I was nervous about primarily, finishing the grapes. Secondly, I was envisioning myself choking on the seeds inside, not being able to ring in the new year at all. Also, being surrounded by friends and their family members, I didn't want to look like an unattractive grape-hog. 

I will admit, I struggled with a few of the grapes. And a few others, I concentrated on a bit more. The 2nd grape: February. My applications for next year are due. The 4th grape: April. My brother's wedding. The 11th grape: November. My 25th birthday. All symbolizing a year that is yet to come. 

Overall, I had no problem, and finished them like a true campeón

There are other Spanish traditions related to the doce uvas. Standing on your right foot while eating them will help you begin the new year in the 'right' way. And dropping your ring in your glass of champagne for the first toast of the new year is said to bring luck as well.

Another tradition says that wearing red (red underwear especially) on New Year's Eve in Spain brings good luck. But, they have to be gifted to you by somebody else.

What are some traditions or superstitions you have for New Year's Eve?

01/14/2012 7:01am

Like a good southern family, we eat black eyed peas for good luck at dinner :o)

01/14/2012 11:49am

We do that in my house too! :)

01/14/2012 3:18pm

Because I don't where else to post this... (maybe cuz there's wine in the picture?)

My favorite wine is also verdejo. When I was studying in Madrid in 2009, we took a day trip to go wine tasting, and this one bodega had the BEST verdejo I've ever had. I can't find it anywhere in the US, which made me really sad. Anywhere, here's a link about it. It's by the bodega Durón


01/15/2012 8:52am

Looks delicious, Sean. Thanks for the great recommendation. Maybe I'll have to make a trip to the bodega if they don't have it in the local bars here!


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