EATING OUR WAY THROUGH BARCELONA
It may seem obvious that Spain is a dream destination for trying different types of cuisine, so we were beyond excited to eat at the various restaurants we were recommended to. There are a few dishes that you simply cannot miss when in Barcelona and luckily we were able to try a bunch of them. No foodie trip to Spain would be complete without trying Paella, of course, so we headed to La Barceloneta, an old fisherman's town, with sea boats (and monster yachts!) in the old harbour of Barcelona's Port Vell on one side and gorgeous sandy beaches on the other. There, we stumbled across Restaurante Barceloneta, which not only had exceptional food, but also exceptional views of the fisherman's wharf and marina area. Traditionally, lunches are large in Barcelona and dinners are quite small, but we made sure to try as much of the fresh seafood as we could! We each picked one appetizer - Ryan's choice was a marinated salmon with dill and mind was a tuna tartare with avocado crema, both served with different homemade crackers. Then came the Paella Moll del Rellotge, which was filled with every type of seafood you could ever desire!
Next, we absolutely had to try Bombas, which are literally an edible piece of Catalan history. During the Spanish Civil War, the anarchists and revolutionaries would roam Barceloneta hurling handmade grenades in their fight against the fascists. From this imagery came the imaginative cuisine: potato croquettes that come served with two different sauces. a white garlic aioli to represent the lighting of the fuse before launching the grenade, or a rich and spicy red sauce to represent the explosion afterwards. We chose the explosive bombas and they were exactly that! We visited the delicious restaurant Bodega La Puntual (named on of Barcelona's Essential Restaurants by Eater.com) in El Born district - a place we were dying to visit for it's beauty and high energy. We decided to follow ALL of the recommendations of the waiter and not only ordered the "atomic bombas" but also fried potatoes (or bravas) in spicy sauce, oysters from Delta, and rice with Iberian pork!
For our last meal out on the town we chose to stray from Catalan cuisine and try a fusion restaurant in our neighborhood of Gràcia called Kibuka Goya. The menu was so extensive that we had a hard time deciding, but we really wanted sushi so that was the majority of our meal. We opted to start with the meat gyoza which came with a delicious handmade sesame sauce for dipping and followed it with a Spicy Tuna-uramaki, which added some fresh crab to the equation. By far the best part of our meal was the Mexican-uramaki, stuffed with ceviche of salmon with jalapeños, onion and cream cheese, covered with avocado and chipotle sauce. I absolutely love spicy sushi so this was a dream come true for me and I would highly recommend it!
This post wouldn’t be complete without one honorable mention and that is El Nacional, which is also in Gràcia. El Nacional is a true gastronomic experience - the restaurant is separated into different areas where you can try traditional recipes from all around the Iberian Peninsula. The choices were endless and the atmosphere was very lively and eclectic. Check out some of the photos I took when visiting this amazing to see what I mean. You’ll see the meat restaurant, fish restaurant, tapas and rice restaurant, and fast deli restaurant, along with four bars specializing in beer, wine, cava, and cocktails - truly a special space in Barcelona!
There are so many restaurants here it makes me sad to leave without trying some of the top rated places to dine. But maybe next time we will be able to follow even more of the recommendations everyone gave us. And if you have more, please leave them in the comments!
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