Food, drink, film and other random thoughts from The Lone Star State.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

BCN: Eat

For my last post about Barcelona I make you a promise - You won't go hungry in Barcelona.

You will find just about any flavor but you should expect the regional Catalan fare to take stage everywhere. And you should try as much of the local food as possible. You can get pasta and baked chicken anywhere, you dont need to fly 14 hours for that.

Sister and I narrowed down our Top 3 to these 5 (alas there were 2 ties, otherwise known as we couldn't make a decision)

Third place

Xuclá i Pintor Fortuny

Located behind the swanky Hotel 1898 we found an alley. The alley had three great indoor / outdoor restaurants. We liked Sagarra the best. Definitely try to snag one of the outdoor tables. You might have to put up with a beggar or two but the street musicians are worth the minor annoyance.

Tapas to try here are: Patatas Bravas, Crab Salad and the uber addictive Spinach Croquettes! Of course, it goes without saying that you will order a litre of Sangria.


Basement of Cortes Ingles
Placa de Catalunya

Sure, you are entering a big mall. So what? Take the escalators down to the basement and round the corner to the counter deli. Pick up a couple of bocadillos (ironically called flautas); make sure to try at least one that is made from Torta de Espana (the ubiquitous potato omlette). This is an inexpensive snack or lunch. Sister and I had these for breakfast so often we started referring to them as Mc Torta Sandwiches.

Second Place

Taller De Tapas
Rambla de Catalunya, 49

On the northern stretch of Las Ramblas in the La Eixample hood. Definitely get an outdoor table and remember noone eats here until at least 10pm. There are items on this menu that we did not see elsewhere and there are some that are just better here.

Tapas to try here: Spinach and Chickpeas with Serrano Ham (we ate this at least four times and loved it!), Patatas Bravas (because you cant get enough of fried potatoes) and Octopus in Garlic Olive Oil (I'm usually luke warm about the Pus but this was unbelievably good!) Once again, you will need to order a litre of Sangria, just in case you forgot.

Taller De Tapas

El Che
Vilà I Vilà, 71

No trip to Barcelona is complete without trying Paella, the most wonderful saffron rice dish. When we asked for the best Paella restaurant we got many responses but this one came up more often as the place the locals would go for their Paella fix.

It was a small, elegant restaurant in the middle of the most diverse neighborhood we saw in Barcelona. Not far from the harbor and only a 15 minute walk from La Rambla. We went old school, Paella with seafood, although we were jealously eyeing our neighbors Paella Negra, a paella made with rice and squid ink; the deep purple of the rice definitely set off everything else. We were totally happy with our paella, although we wanted more seafood.

With paella I recommend taking a break from Sangria and switching over to one of the many wonderful Spanish Tempranillos or Riojas.

Our Favorite

Cuidad Comdal
Rambla de Catalunya, 18

Ask any Barcelona native and they will tell you this place is the best place for tapas. We agree. By now you know the drill: sangria, patatas bravas. Here you should also try Pan con Tomate, Grilled Asparagus, Grilled Pork Loin and the Tuna Stuffed Peppers! If you like beer, try the one brewed in Barcelona, Estrella Damm. If you like desserts try the Catalonain Creme, its like Creme Brulee only more pudding like. Its better to sit inside to capture the whole natives-eat-out feel, however be prepared to scream to be heard; its always busy and the Barcelona crowd is loud.

Cuidad Comdal



Blogger island images said...

Only 1 liter of kids are becoming light weirhts in their old age

1:44 PM

Blogger Jim said...

Um Dad, that would be one litre of sangria per meal. Four to five meals a day, not to mention snacks, you know, since we walked alot :)

1:54 PM

Blogger suzy said...

It all sounds wonderful! Spain is on my list of places to see, eventually!
weirhts? Dad your typing is goodly

12:40 AM

Blogger Jim said...

Glad you enjoyed Suzy and hope you make it there eventually!

(LOL, missed the weirhts the first time )

8:11 AM

Blogger john said...

I can't wait for the oppportunity to travel.

6:23 PM

Blogger Jim said...

John, it will come very soon! (I know thats easy for me to say)

10:51 PM


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