Barcelona’s Diverse Dining Scene for Locals and Tourists

A Restaurant Barcelona is a Mecca For Locals and Tourists

The twins’ ‘nostalgic cuisine’ is built on dishes that are part of Barcelona’s gastronomic history. Under the lofty ceiling and wine-bottle-lined walls, they work their magic.

With a refreshingly laid-back dining scene and prices that keep diners in their seats, Barcelona’s restaurant scene is on the rise. From classic rice and tapas to cutting-edge fusion.

What is it?

A restaurant barcelona is a place where locals and tourists meet to enjoy a meal of tapas, small plates or a full-on menu. The scene is wildly varied, with everything from rustic, sawdusty bars to clean-lined spaces that showcase chefs trained all over the world. Many exemplify the mashed-up spirit of the city: trendy but traditional, guarded but gregarious. Pull up a stool and you might be sitting next to a punky teenager and an octogenarian in tweed, all sharing the same desire for good food and great drinks.

Lebanese-born chef Marc Barcelo combines the best of his homeland with Catalan ingredients at Albe. The result is an inventive menu of hearty dishes and creative deconstructions of classics. You can have lunch in the plant-filled front room or a moody, romantic dinner in the back. Either way, you’ll want to start with the smoked labneh with pita or the revamped patata enmascarada (potato with black pudding and bacon), then move on to duck breast with bitter orange sauce and Iberian pork cheek over french toast.

When it comes to haute cuisine in Barcelona, few restaurants can compete with the creativity of Martin Berasategui. His space in the Hotel Monument is a must-visit, whether you’re craving a quick snack like the apple millefeuille or his imaginative take on traditional dishes. The method he and his team use to create these wonders of the plate is called “gourmanization,” which combines guidelines on how to conduct social research with certain tools such as participant observation and an ethnographic approach.

A long seafood display greets you as you enter this grand old seafood restaurant in the center of town. Choose from fresh catches from the Mediterranean and select your preferred cuts, then pair them with wines, champagnes and cordials from the extensive list. There are also a variety of tapas on offer, including an impressive array of ceviches and cured meats. The restaurant was founded in 1836 and has a rich history, having been visited by famous writers such as Camilo Jose Cela, Federico Garcia Lorca and even artists and revolutionaries like Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Che Guevara.

Why go?

The seafood here is incredibly fresh and tasty, so be sure to sample a tuna tartare, grilled seabass or seafood paella. You’ll also find plenty of dishes that blend slow Catalan cooking with Japanese influences, like squid and Iberian bacon montadito or three sausage gyoza with fava beans. If you have room, finish with a dessert like ginger ice cream, apple pie or chocolate coulet.

It’s not uncommon for restaurants in Barcelona to stay open until 10:00 pm or later, so don’t be afraid to eat late. In fact, dinnertime is when the city really gets going, especially when you’re dining on tapas. In contrast to Madrid, where people restaurant-hop and graze from place to place, it’s much more customary in Barcelona to plant yourself at a restaurant for the evening, ordering lots of small plates.

One of the best places to go for Spanish cuisine is Martn Berasategui’s space in the Monument hotel. Here, the chef creates fusion dishes that have made him famous throughout Spain and beyond. His creative combinations (such as the squid and Iberian bacon burger with pea stew) and inventive use of ingredients such as saffron and yuzu are worth the trip alone.

Taverna El Glop is another great spot to enjoy traditional Catalan fare in a unique setting. The restaurant has a wooden terrace that’s perfect for alfresco lunches on warm days, or you can dine indoors in the warm and cozy interior.

This newish restaurant on the left side of Eixample is what happens when a Lebanese restaurateur moves to Barcelona and starts combining Mediterranean produce with his own smoked labneh. The result is a menu that’s full of surprising combinations, like grilled lamb with pita and a pomegranate sauce, or duck breast in a bitter orange sauce. The modern, plant-filled dining area is ideal for a casual lunch or romantic dinner, and the kitchen will happily translate the menu into English for you.

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