Anyone making the trip to Barcelona will be well-aware of the almost limitless variety in day-time activities that keep visitors flocking to the city every year. After a day of sight-seeing there’s bound to be a few pangs of hunger within your party though, so make sure you conduct some research before you travel to ensure that your tastebuds are given as much of a workout as your legs on a trip to this Catalonian beauty.
A restaurant that does a mighty fine job of marrying together the traditional and the very modern. The menu is playful, the décor is old-school and the food is heavenly. As you’d expect in Barcelona, the menu veers towards seafood so if cod croquettes and fried prawns are your bag, you’ll be well-served in this open-til-late oasis of off-the-beaten track tapas bar. The McFoie Burger is the restaurants signature dish, featuring a medium-rare beef patty with a little dab of creamy foie on the side for good measure giving this little dish its title.
For those who like a bit of showmanship to go with their meal, Manairo is the place to visit. Chef Jordi Herrera has a particularly showy approach to his food, utilizing blow torches, drills and high voltage lamps to create a menu that takes traditional Spanish food to the next level with tasting menus targeting true foodies to try something completely new and innovative in an intimate environment. Manairo now boasts a Michelin star, so as you might expect, it’s not a place you should go to if you’re looking for cheap eats on a trip to Barcelona but it’s well-worth a visit if you’re serious about food. I had the Al Clavo Adiente on my trip there, fillets cooked from inside-out with heated spikes – it was delicious and well worth the trip to Diputacio 424 for a look-see.
A perfect venue for a sensuous Mediterranean lunch. The name of this ornate restaurant translates as “Five Senses” and all of these senses are given a serious work-out thanks to an inventive menu that is paced beautifully with pan-seared lobster, monkfish sprinkled with bacon dust and soft poached egg with tomato jam earning this restaurant a hearty recommendation from renowned food critics Frommers. As far as Iberian delacies go, this eatery based at Aribau 58 in Barcelona is difficult to better.
Fusion restaurants are nothing new, but when it comes to cross-pollinating Asian delicacies with tapas, you won’t find many better examples than this place based on C/Elisabets. Chef Albert Raurich has created a menu that draws inspiration from Japan, Thailand and Vietnam while maintaining the traditional Spanish produce of prawn, Iberian pork and prawns to create something really special such as Gyoza, dumplings and Japanese burgers. If you’re on a budget for your Barcelona trip, make sure you go there at lunch, it gets quite expensive for the night-time menu.
Another tapas bar and it’s not even the food that necessarily makes this a must-visit. The atmosphere here is quintessentially Catalonian and is perfect if you’re looking to get a real taste of the city – though probably not if you’re feeling worse for wear. Great local food is on offer, however, which should be enjoyed with a large glass of local wine. Based in one Barcelona’s back streets in Old Town (Carrer de la Merce), the food is reasonably priced and the house special “Polpo” was a particular highlight.
About the Author: Mark Booth is web content editor for The Stag Company, one of the UK’s leading providers of the Barcelona stag do. For a stag weekend that’s more than your average “paintball and a pint”, visit their site to make an enquiry.