Restaurants in Barcelona
The level of the cuisine is very high in Barcelona, where it is possible to taste specialities from Catalonia and other Spanish regions as well as find excellent restaurants offering dishes from all over the world.
Amongst the best typical dishes of the Catalan and Spanish cuisine are these:
- paella: based on rice, saffron and oil cooked in the typical paellera. It can be marinera (with shellfish), valenciana (with meat and vegetables) or mixta (with shellfish, meat and vegetables). Originally from Valencia, this is definitely the most famous Spanish dish in the world
- tapas: probably the most important contribution of Spain to international cuisine. Tapas basically consist of any type of dish served in small portions. Amongst the most famous tapas are croquetas (croquettes with ham or other fillings), patatas bravas (potatoes with a spicy sauce), calamares a la romana (batter fried squid), and gambas a la plancha (grilled prawns), but the list is endless...
- fideuà: Catalan dish made with fideos (thin spaghetti) served with saffron and shellfish, as well as with cattlefish ink and squids or with an alli e oli (garlic and oil) sauce
- butifarra con judias: another Catalan speciality, a spiced pork sausage served with beans
- arroz caldoso de pescado: very tasty rice cooked in a shellfish broth. It can also be cooked with a lobster, and in this case it is called arroz caldoso de bogavante
- zarzuela: a typical Catalan fish and shellfish soup with tomato
- tortilla: potatoes and onions omelette. A very well known Spanish dish
- pinchos: a Basque dish, it consists of tapas of every kind served on a slice of bread
- pan con tomate (or pa amb tomaquet - in Catalan): bread seasoned with tomato, oil and salt, typical of Catalonia
- gazpacho: Andalusian speciality, a cold spicy tomato soup served with trimmings of gherkins, peppers, diced tomatoes, etc.
- horchata: refreshing drink prepared from the chufa plant
- churros con chocolate: fried batter dipped in chocolate. Very popular in Spain for breakfast and, especially, after a night spent at the disco
- crema catalana: considered the ancestor of the creme brulè
Barceloneta is the area of Barcelona where it is possible to taste the best fish-based dishes: paella marinera, fideuà, arroz caldoso de pescado or bogavante and zarzuela. For these dishes the following restaurants are highly recommended:
Carrer Almirant Aixada 23
It is preferable to book in advance to get a table on the terrace (Tel. 93 221 58 18 or 93 221 54 55).
Carrer de San Carles 4
An old fishermen’s restaurant, particularly famous for its arroz caldoso de pescado.
Other very good restaurants for dishes based on fish and shellfish are El Cangrejo Loco, in the Olympic Port, and La Gavina (a bit more expensive) in Port Vell.
El Cangrejo Loco
Moll de Gregal 29-30 – Olympic Port
Underground: Ciutadela - Vila Olimpica
Plaza Pau Vila, 1 - Palau del Mar
In Barceloneta it is possible to find some informal little restaurants for tasting simpler fish dishes such as grilled prawns and fried squids, or fish-based tapas:
Carrer de la Maquinista, 3
Carrer de Ginebra, 13
Can MañoStill in Barceloneta, El Vaso de Oro, known as the narrowest bar in the world, is famous especially for its foie gras tapas and for its beer:
Carrer del Baluard, 12
El Vaso de Oro
Carrer de Balboa, 6
Between the neighbourhoods of Barceloneta and Born, a few steps away from Plaça del Palau, one of the oldest restaurants of Barcelona, Set Portes, offers excellent paella and typical Catalan cuisine:
Passeig Isabel II, 14
Another historical restaurant is Els Quatre Gats, patronized by Picasso and other modernist artists at the beginning of the twentieth century. Here it is possible to taste some typical Catalan dishes. Its prices are rather high, though.
Els Quatre Gats
Carrer de Montsiò, 3 bis
The Senyor Parellada, in the Born district, offers Catalan cuisine at an excellent price:
Carrer de l'Argenteria, 37
Metro: Jaume I
Also situated in the Born district, Sagardi offers a large selection of Basque pinchos to be eaten at the bar:
Carrer de l'Argenteria, 62
Metro: Jaume I
Txapela is one of the best restaurants for tasting pinchos and has a very wide selection. It is situated on the Passeig de Gracia:
Passeig de Gracia , 8-10
Underground: Passeig de Gracia
La Tinaja, in the Born district, is an excellent choice for tasting Catalan and Spanish cold meats and cheeses. It also offers an excellent selection of wines. On the other hand, its hot dishes are not recommended:
Carrer de l'Esparteria , 9
Underground: Jaume I
Les Quinze Nits, situated in Plaça Reial, serves Catalan and Spanish dishes at very reasonable prices. It is strongly recommended to arrive early in order to avoid a long queue:
Les Quinze Nits
Plaça Reial, 6
In the heart of the Eixample area, in Rambla de Catalunya, you can find the Ciudad Condal, very popular amongst the people living in Barcelona thanks to its excellent tapas:
Rambla de Catalunya, 18
Underground: Passeig de Gracia
Finally, in Bar Pinotxo, inside the Boqueria market, near the entrance from the Ramblas, it is possible to taste tapas prepared from the products of the market:
Mercat de la Boqueria, La Rambla, 91