Thoughts on food: Barcelona

Barcelona is a great place to visit in December. Admittedly I haven’t visited at any other time of year but the sky was blue, the air was crisp and the queues for the main attractions were long enough to convince me that I’d rather not visit in the summer. The food in Barcelona is also perfect for chillier temperatures. Throughout our stay we managed to sample lots of culinary delights and I’ve listed my favourites below…

Note: I’m based in a rural Spanish town which only serves regional food. As a consequence we wanted to make the most of Barcelona’s international offerings because we were in desperate need of a break from tortilla and jamón.

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Milk. On the first day we visited Milk, a cosy cafe which serves delicious brunches. The menu was extensive; think American pancakes, French toast, full English breakfasts, Greek yogurt and granola. Authentically Spanish it was not, but comforting and tasty it most certainly was and, after an early morning flight, it was just what we needed.

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Kapadokya. Another restaurant we visited was a Turkish place on Rambla del Raval in the center of the city. The menu was slightly confusing so we were all a bit unsure what we ordered but our hasty choices paid off. The portions were huge and all eight of us loved our meals. For me, Turkish food is always a winner and their falafel was the best I’ve ever tasted. It was amazingly cheap too!

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La Bouqueria. This indoor food market is located just off La Rambla, one of Barcelona’s main streets. The market is made up of a circular formation of stalls with a huge fish section making up the central ring. As you work your way outwards there’s meat, fruit, vegetables, bread, pastries, sweet treats, smoothies and juices. It’s the type of place where locals can do their weekly shop and tourists can buy delicious snacks – there’s something for every food-eating human. The best bargain? A punnet of dates for one euro!

2Can Culleretes. You might be pleased to hear that we did taste some local food during our stay. In fact, we had a sunday lunch in Barcelona’s oldest restaurant, Can Culleretes (1786). The place was packed full of locals (a rarity in Barcelona) and the walls were lined with photos of famous customers. The waiters all seemed to be generations of the same family; we were served by the Grandmother, who was surprisingly efficient and put my waitressing skills to shame. The menu was all in Catalan so the ordering was a bit of a lottery, however we all ate well and I would definitely recommend this one.

La Pallaresa.photo 1 copy 3 Down the narrow streets of the Gothic quarter there are numerous chocolate cafes. La Pallaressa permanently has a hefty queue outside it’s door, it’s been running since 1947 and is famous for it’s chocolate and churros. We decided to brave the queue on our last evening and I’m really glad we did. As it turns out, the waiters are basically model-standard Spanish men in white shirts and bow-ties scurrying around serving molten chocolate and whipped cream. It was quite an ideal situation all in all. I’m unsure whether the popularity is due to the deliciously thick bowls of dark chocolate or the servers themselves, either way it is totally worth the 30 minute wait.

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