I lived for a short while in Barcelona and, if you’ve seen episode 1, 2 and 3 of my series Hooked Up, you’ll know how much I love this city.
Here are some places I love to go:
Head to the rooftop of the Hotel 1898 for a coffee. You can escape the crowds of La Rambla and disappear up here where it’s so calm and chic and has a spectacular view over the whole city.
Churrería Manuel San Román Carrer dels Banys Nous, 8
To indulge in a traditional churros experience get a brown paper cone of these hot sugar-covered doughnuts and a little cup of thick chocolate for dipping. There isn’t anywhere to sit but these are great to eat while getting lost in the little backstreets.
Sol Soler at Plaça del Sol, 21 in Gracia
If you want somewhere a little more low key and prefer a crowd that’s young, alternate, a little bit hippy – this place up in the relaxed neighbourhood of Gracia is also one of my favourites and is where I used to live back when I was a resident. Lots of great simple traditional dishes. The seating is mainly out in the square, which provides fantastic people watching. You can walk to Gracia from La Rambla if you’re reasonably fit. It’s just straight up in one direction and then turn right so it’s easy to find.
If you’d like to try market food then El Quim de la Boqueria is a place I highly highly recommend. Personally I find La Boqueria market super touristy so it takes a lot to get me to go in here but this place serves up the most mouthwatering food at their little bar I have ever eaten in my life. Try the prawns eaten straight out of the pan or the wild boar risotto.
This place is my favourite and was recommended to me by the lovely local Camilla, who I met in episode two. I just don’t know which is better – lunch when you can escape the heat and slurp delicious fresh juices and sangria and watch buskers out the front of the restaurant; or dinner when things get balmy and sexy and you can dine on tapas for hours. The food here is sophisticated and adventurous but also very Catalan so you can sample local flavours and there is indoor and outdoor seating.
Head to this secret little club/bar where some nights there are tango lessons, other nights there are political debates, other nights there’s a jazz band. It is so dark and moody and intimate and unknown even to many locals.