On New Year's Eve, Spanish people eat 12 grapes at midnight; one grape for each stroke of the clock to represent the 12 months of the new year. Eating 12 grapes on New Year's Eve is a Spanish tradition and superstition to bring good fortune in the coming year.
This Spanish New Year's Eve culinary tradition dates back to 1909, when grape growers in Alicante, Spain promoted the practice to deal with a surplus of grapes. The tradition is also practiced in other countries, including Portugal, Venezuela, Cuba, Mexico, Ecuador and Peru. The goal for each person participating in the New Year's Eve tradition is to swallow all 12 grapes before the last stroke of midnight.