Food, glorious food.
You might have guessed by now that Dan and I like our food… In fact the only thing I’ve bought on this trip so far is a cook book. Seriously. The only other things I’ve spent money on are food, drinks and sights. Thank goodness really, as my suitcase is RIDICULOUSLY heavy as it is and I just can’t fit much more in it.
As I mentioned in my previous post, our airbnb host Rosa was awesome, and provided us with a long list of restaurants and bars to visit. She pointed out a few of her absolute favourites, most of which we tried, and they were all great.
Here are the standouts.
We discovered this cafe just walking around. Bar Lobo was down the road from our place, and we went there almost every morning for breakfast. We all ordered the Churchill every single time – scrambled or fried eggs, bacon, toast, orange juice and coffee. DELICIOUS.
Really well cooked and just a great pick me up in the morning. Not particularly Spanish but I think in the mornings you can be forgiven for going back to old habits.
Carrer del Pintor Fortuny, 3
Fabrica Moritz is a huge place with a wine bar, restaurant, brewery, bakery and shop all in the one building. It is super cool, but more importantly the beer is light and delicious, and the food is amazing. We went twice because we loved it so much the first time.
The menu is ridiculously huge but everything we ate was delicious, and really reasonably priced.
Both times we ordered a mix of things to share, and truly nothing disappointed. We had cheesy, bacon-ey baked potato, garlic sautéed vegetables, incredibly light and crunchy eggplant / aubergine tempura, crème fraiche onion and bacon pizza, fried fish cheek, croquettes and much more.
Everything was delicious so I won’t go on. But if you are in Barcelona, make sure you go to Fabrica Moritz!!
Ronda de Sant Antoni, 39 – 41
Mucci’s was just down the road from where we were staying, and seems to be a bit of a uni hangout.
We went a few times, and enjoyed the empanadas and pizza’s on offer. The cheese and onion empanada was delicious, as was a slightly spiced beef empanada. The vegie pizza was pretty yum also, and everything was really cheap. Perfect for a quick meal or snack.
Barceloneta is the suburb wedged in between the port and the beaches, and right up against the port is restaurant Barceloneta. It’s huge, but has a great vibe with a bit of a nautical theme going on.
We splurged on dinner here, and weren’t disappointed. The gazpacho (cold tomato soup) was really creamy yet tangy and fresh, a great palate cleanser. It wasn’t too oily either, I’ve had a few other gazpacho’s on the trip and they often seem to be half soup – half olive oil, but this was one distinctly non-oily and yum.
I was a bit iffy on the idea of prawn ceviche, but Dan ordered it and I’m really glad he did, it was seriously great. Nice and citrus-ey, it melted in your mouth.
For mains we shared a seafood paella, which was beautifully cooked, particularly a scampi (I think that’s what it was) that came on top. The taste was a bit too rich for me, but I could appreciate how well cooked it was, and Dan was in seafood heaven.
All in all we had a delicious meal that was well worth it. The service was very attentive as well.
C/ de l’Escar, 22
Moll dels Pescadors – (Port Vell)
Literally across the road from our apartment door was Teresa Carles, a vegetarian restaurant that was always pumping. I had wanted to go from the minute Rosa told us about it, and finally got my chance on our last day in Barcelona when Dan and I went for lunch.
The fit-out is really well done, understated and simple with a big open kitchen at the front, exposed brick walls and simple wooden tables and chairs. I’m sure I took photos but I cannot find any except for two of our dessert.
We ordered healthy nachos and they really did taste healthy! We also ordered an amazing starter of stuffed artichoke hearts with quail eggs on top, perfectly poached. I wish I could find the photo of it as I’m sure I took one, but it’s mysteriously gone missing. Anyway, it was a beautiful dish.
Dan had a decadent chocolate pudding for dessert, and I had a vegan brownie with raspberry sorbet on top, it was divine.
For the Melbournites reading this, Teresa Carles was like a Barcelona style Vegie Bar, and we loved it.
Carrer de Jovellanos, 2
Dan and I made it here for our last dinner in Barcelona, it’s in the old gothic quarter and looks unassuming from the front, but once inside you feel like you’re in an old, beautifully maintained mansion, with chandeliers, grand arches and white tablecloths. We both felt a tad under-dressed in our touristy clothes, but oh well. That’s what happens when you’re a tourist I suppose!
Considering the décor and the impeccable and friendly service, the food is very reasonably priced. We had a range of things to share (what we do most of the time actually), and a few highlights included beautifully fried vegetables that came in a paper cone, croquettes, a cheese platter, and that delightful Spanish delicacy – churros!!
We’ve hardly had any churros in Spain, which is a crying shame – what’s not to like about deep fried crunchy donuts dipped in chocolate sauce?! These did not disappoint either.
Senyor Parellada was a really lovely experience, with beautiful décor, great service and good food at a very affordable price.
Carrer de l’Argenteria, 37
Rosa highly recommended this restaurant, although she warned us there would be a wait. It was about a 15-20 minute walk away from our place, and once we arrived (at about 9.30pm), the place was pumping, with people everywhere. We put our name down for a table, and were told it would be an hour and a half wait, but to come back in 45 minutes just in case. So we wandered around the corner to wait at a quiet bar. We came back 45 minutes later and ordered a drink at the bar, then stood around watching other people eat. Amazingly, our name was called about 5 minutes later, so it was very lucky we came back when we did!
We went to town ordering all sorts of tapas plates to share.
Some of the highlights were a steak with pepper on top, really tender and flavoursome, and cheese covered in nuts then fried – decadent but not too rich, and they came out on sticks like a lollipop!
We also had a slightly strange dish that I think is a bit of a Spanish specialty as I’ve seen it in quite a few restaurants – potato sliced up and fried with a light tomato based sauce, brought out in a bowl with a fried egg on top and then mushed up all together… The waiter mixes it up in front of you at the table. It’s a bit strange, but still quite nice!
I’m not sure this place was quite as amazing as the huge queues would suggest, but it was really good food and it felt very satisfying to eventually be seated.
Carrer de Mallorca, 236
One night we succumbed to tiredness, hunger and plain old laziness. We were walking down La Rambla, the most touristy of all tourist streets in Barcelona, and we went against our normal rule of walking at least a couple of blocks away from a main street before picking somewhere to eat.
Really, we should have known by the fact the restaurant was called American Soda, but it was late, we were tired and we gave in.
Our meal for three came to 117 euros whish is OUTRAGEOUS, one of the most expensive meals of the trip and by far the worst. We had quite a nice waiter who spoke six languages, but that was about it for good points!
Pete and Dan ordered large beers and WOW they were huge. But neither of them liked the actual flavour of the beer that much. I didn’t take any photos of the food, but we had a pretty uninspired paella, and some tapas including overcooked prawns.
I won’t go on but you get the picture. It filled a hole in our belly so it was fine, but it was expensive, bad food. It was a good reminder to walk away from touristy restaurants no matter how hungry or tired you are!
Calle Sant Pau, 2
This is not about a specific restaurant, but I can’t write a post on food and drinking in Spain without mentioning Sangria!
We almost forgot to drink some sangria with Pete before he left us for the next leg of his trip, but we finally remembered after a beach session, and it was well worth it. Spritzy and summery, it was a great way to finish off a day at the beach!
As you can probably tell, the food in Barcelona is inspiring and delicious if you take the time to search out the gems, and especially when you have someone like Rosa who gives you the names of the best places to try!!