Barcelona Part II • All Things Food
I loved the variety of the food we ate in Barcelona…
Whether we ate at a restaurant or at a little stall in La Boqueria, there was always such flavorful food and so many to choose from! I don’t know much about the Spanish culinary history or culture, but it seems like they have sort of a short attention span with foods and needed to load their dining tables with small plates to satisfy their palette.
Our first stop for food was after visiting Sagrada Familia. We looked up a place online before heading out to go sightseeing, but as we got hungrier and grumpier walking through town, we finally stopped at Restaurante Palermo. It wasn’t too busy when we sat down, but part of the reason why we chose to eat there was for their modern decor.
Tony got an Estrella Damm, and we ordered a spread of tapas: pan con tomate, anchovies, potatas bravas, croquetas, mushrooms, and mussels…
Walking around town, we saw a few interesting and unique food-related things:
– jamon shops with walls full of whole ham legs
– “Gaudi Rocks” pastries that mimic the organic shapes by the architect
– the biggest vending machines I’ve seen around! The one pictured here was selling bottled sodas, water, cookies, and other snacks, all in one big display at a metro station.
On our first night, we met up with Tony’s friend, Marina, who was studying at the University of Barcelona. She picked the restaurant La Flauta near her school. The restaurant was named for the flutelike bread they use for sandwiches, but we skipped the sandwiches and went for their tapas. Gosh I wish I remember the name of my favorite dish that night, the one with beans and jamon in a ridiculously flavorful sauce!
The 2nd day in Barcelona, we explored the famous La Boqueria (well, technically it’s Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria but I’m not good at Spanish), a large food market on the touristy street La Rambla.
We were starving (as usual) and sampled all sorts of food from different vendors, such as fresh cut fruits served in cups, Spanish chorizo on a stick, pieces of fried fish, and it goes on…
We then wandered around the alleys off La Rambla, window shopping at little shops, and checked off another important food item from our list: churro con chocolate.
We stumbled upon Granja La Palleresa, an old little cafe that seemed to be from another century. Their clientele was mostly older locals, and the aging decor had little art nouveau accents.
Another small-plate meal we had in Barcelona was pintxos (or “pinchos”) at Bilbao Berria, just around the corner from Barcelona Cathedral. The little dishes supported by toothpicks all priced the same, at 1.65 Euros, and lined the bar for you to serve yourself. Some common savory ingredients were olives, quail eggs and fish (smoked or grilled), and there were dessert items too.
I’m getting hungry just looking at these photos…
For our final meal in Barcelona, I was craving some paella… I thought, how can you be in Spain and not have paella?! Apparently the Valencian dish was not common in Barcelona, and it took us a long time to locate a restaurant that served it. It was a random restaurant in the Raval district, and honestly I wouldn’t recommend it…
But here are the photos of our dinner with seafood paella!