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Vuelve Carolina, An Organic Food Paradise In The Heart Of Valencia

VALENCIA, SPAIN - Would you like to undertake an exotic journey, discover authentic Southern European dishes and enjoy a fresh, organic salad, an eternal symbol of the Mediterranean cuisine?  Then you will probably have to visit Spain, the country of wine and divine architectural monuments. Many tourists headed to the sun-kissed peninsular destination would be interested to know the names of taverns that offer traditional healthy meals. And many restaurant owners brainstorm constantly about how to make their place more special and appealing to visitors.

There is no better strategy of convincing your customers of the authenticity and quality of your veggies than leading them into a charming garden and encouraging them to choose their salad ingredients. The idea is truly unique and it works, according to the proprietors of the Valencia-based tavern ‘Vuelve Carolina’.

Besides its delicious menu focusing on typical Spanish meals (as seen in Photos 1 & 2), including tapas and sangria, the restaurant is also characterized by its ‘green wall’ – an eco-friendly tool used to grow various types of vegetation in tiny rows on a vertical platform (as seen in Photo 3 with the staff ). ‘Vuelve Carolina’ has adopted the MiniGarden system, also known as a Vertical Allotment, to cultivate its assortment of green products.

In what way does it function?  The Vertical Allotment’s basic version comprises three modules which resemble lidded window boxes, and it measures 57 cm in height and 64cm in width (22.5in by 25in) when attached to the wall.  Each module has three planting ‘mouths’. The modules are connected to a micro-irrigation system, set to water the vegetation every eight hours for a ten-second time duration. The MiniGarden system is self-draining - excess water gets channeled through its lids.

The eco-friendly Vertical Allotment system beats traditional gardening in several different ways. Some of its most attractive features include its capacity to consume less water for plants irrigation, the ability to increase protection from slugs and other detrimental insects, and the possibility of a higher control over products cultivation.  When your veggies grow fully on the surface, you can proudly demonstrate your eco-chic wall to your guests.

The MiniGarden’s kit is adapted to be free-standing, but it can easily be attached to the wall for a more effective appearance. You can place it vertically, horizontally or in a ‘back-to-back’ manner, depending on your choice and needs.

Despite its numerous practical features, the MiniGarden system also has its drawbacks and limitations. Although it can be perfectly adapted for the cultivation of salad, herbs, flowers, houseplants and even strawberries, it can grow only a limited amount of greenery on its surface. Also by the time when greenery spawns and covers it completely, a big portion of its plastic material will be visible.

The idea of an eco-wall has been recently introduced into commercial centers, boutiques and business offices to import vigor and natural aesthetics into the general atmosphere. The Vertical Allotment can be used either as a practical solution in an indoor kitchen, or to bring life into gardens, rooftops, outdoor patios and yards. And in the case of ‘Vuelve Carolina’, it can serve both functions.

So the next time you consider visiting Spain, make sure your organic food exploration starts in the eco-chic tavern ‘Vuelve Carolina’. What you see on the wall is what you get in your plate!

Photos courtesy of Vuelve Carolina Staff