The whole reason for this trip to Spain was to experience rice prepared by the best hands. We visited the two most revered rice restaurants in the country in Alicante. Stripped to its most essential ingredients - the quality of the rice, the simplicity and excellence of the garnish, the quality of the saffron, wood fire, and the skill of the chef. We found it. Many people don't know what a true paella is like - this dish outside of this region and outside of Spain rarely resembles the original. Paella never has more than a very simple garnish, always seasonal, and certainly NEVER a heap of mussels/chicken/sausage/etc. In this region rice is garnished with rabbit and snails. The rice at Elias was everything we have dreamt of. Texture, flavour, crunchy, soccarat, phenomenal. Elias was an amazing restaurant tucked deep into the Alicante countryside, packed full every lunch, with a level of service and elegance that was a marvel. Photos also include local marcona almonds, lamb sweetbreads with wild asparagus and young garlic, and another exquisite local dish called "gachamigas" a soft savoury bread made with garlic, water, flour and olive oil. Final picture is the wood fire where the rice is cooked - a pot in the middle to saute the rabbit to order while the rice is cooking. Excellent. Best pilgrimage ever.