There are so many incredible Barcelona restaurants, so I’ve rounded up some of the best!
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Barcelona is an amazing food destination! I’ve rounded up a few of my favorites. As usual, I tried to include a mix of price points as well as some traditional and some less.
Eating Well in Barcelona
Like I’ve shared before, Barcelona isn’t the cheapest of cities. For example, eating tapas-style is cheap per plate, but tends to add up. You should absolutely eat tapas as often as possible! Just know it’s not necessarily a cheap eat. For the most economic way to eat at Barcelona restaurants, order the menu of the day (menú del día). It’s usually an appetizer, main, and dessert for 12-18€, and it’s a ton of food. Get it at lunch and you may not need much more for the day!
That being said, here are a few things you should definitely try in Spain:
- Seafood anything is popular here in Barcelona! Easy choice next to the ocean. Cod (bacallà) is a really traditional fish option – order esqueixada de bacallà.
- Fideuà is sort of a pasta version of paella, and much more local to the area. Order a seafood version!
- Like Italians, the Spanish love their cured meats. Make sure to order something including jamon!
- Though not native to Barcelona, you’d be missing out if you don’t try paella. Originally from southern Spain, if you’re not heading down there you should 100% order it.
- Crema Catalana is an iconic local dessert. It’s a custard with a lovely caramel over the top, similar to flan. Definitely worth ordering to finish on a sweet note!
Tapas & Pintxos
Irati Taverna Basca
For a perfect tapas/pintxos experience, head to Irati Taverna Basca! It’s a cute spot off Las Ramblas to take a break from the heat and try a little bit of everything.
Really, this is more of a pintxos place. Tapas are technically small dishes of food, meant to be shared. Pintxos are like crostini – pretty much always served on bread. Because it’s all on bread, they typically calculate your bill based on the number of toothpicks on your plate when you’re finished – one per pintxo.
They have a bar set up with their cold options, and everything will look good! But don’t fill up too much, waiters come around with a tray of freshly prepared hot pintxos every ten minutes! The staff is super knowledgeable and friendly, and they spoke at least four languages while I was there. So they’ll take care of you.
Start with great sangria, and then go crazy on the menu. My favorite thing had to be the potato croquettes (croquetas), but everything from the red shrimp to the blistered peppers were amazing!
If you want a more elegant tapas experience, try Ciudad Condal. Their menu has a great variety to it while still reflecting Spanish classics. From the grilled cuttlefish and patatas bravas to the assorted Iberian montaditos, we loved everything we tried! A surprise favorite that our waiter recommended was the eggplant chips drizzled with a touch of honey – so good!
El Rey De La Gamba
El Rey De La Gamba is equally popular with locals and tourists, so you know the food is good. As the name suggests, their specialty is seafood!
Most restaurants will display their menu del dia outside, so you know what your options are before you sit down. This place has 6-10 options for each course on that menu, so it was the obvious choice! My “appetizer” was a charcuterie plate that could’ve been a light lunch in itself! Definitely a win for lunch.
Calling El Nacional a food hall is a massive understatement. It’s a swanky, gorgeous space that houses four separate restaurant spaces and several bars. You choose a themed area – steakhouse, seafood, tapas, or upscale deli – and they all have custom menus and elegant options.
If you need an infusion of vegetables, head to A Vocados. The vibe is funky, almost-tiki bar, with live music on weekend nights. The food is really good, and you can order veggie-packed dishes like poke bowls, sandwiches, pizza, or salads. I highly recommend it if you’re feeling weighed down by all the delicious (but heavy) Spanish food!
Breakfast & Brunch
Milk Bar & Bistro
Barcelona is a bunch city – there are plenty of options if you want a big meal first thing! My favorite was at Milk Bar & Bistro. Their menu had plenty of options, so I went with friends and we ordered entirely too much food! The royal salmon benedict was amazing, and one of five different benedicts, always a positive at a brunch spot. I think my favorite dish was actually the chorizo hash – a bowl of potatoes, spicy sausage, spinach, cheese and a poached egg!
Another great brunch option is right next door: The Benedict. Ironically, I didn’t order a benedict here. But I couldn’t resist their cochinita pibil omelet. If you are feeling benedicts, never fear: they have 6 on the menu! Like any good brunch spot, they also have a great cocktail and coffee drink menu!
If you need a coffee to get going for the day, head to Cafes El Magnifico. They have incredibly good beans, roasted locally, with amazing blends. I was overjoyed with their iced Americano!
You know I had to include at least one speakeasy! Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go because the line was too long to get in before closing, but it’s high on my list for next time. Paradiso was rated as one of the top 50 bars in the world in 2019 for amazing cocktails and ambiance.
There are so many amazing Barcelona restaurants – I’m already planning a trip back just for more great meals.
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