Her Worship the Mayor was invited to declare ‘open’ the Calentita Food Festival, an annual culinary event which draws large crowds of locals and tourists alike. Her Worship gave a short but apt speech, as follows:
“I am very happy to have been asked to say a few words on what has become Gibraltar`s annual international food festival, which is aptly named “Calentita.” I have visions of the late 1950`s in Gibraltar, of seeing the Calentita street vendor walking through our streets carrying a large round container on his head, which he would then rest on a small stool he carried, and then he would cut out a slice. It was a good source of protein known as the poor family`s staple, and can be traced back to the 16th century, when the Genoese migrants brought the recipe to Gibraltar long before British rule.
Gibraltar celebrates its place in the world of food today, with the many stalls here providing all sorts of favourite delicacies from different countries, which portray the essence of our very diverse community. It is a celebration of our food culture that should not be underestimated as a defining factor in Gibraltar’s legitimacy as a nation.
I want you to know that I have asked the government that our dish of Calentita secure world heritage status for a food with deep roots and cultural meaning.”
Following her speech Her Worship was given a tour by one of the organisers and was able to sample some of the local delicacies on offer.