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Dec 22, 2010 09:11 AM

Restaurant Recommendations in Barcelona

We will be in Barcelona between January 9th and 14th. I would appreciate any suggestions for restaurants and other places to eat.

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  1. Welcome to Chowhound. You need to do some research and make your questions more specific, including your budget and food preferences. Use the search function (at the top of the page), type in "Barcelona", and you will find a plethora of recommendations and discussions already here. After you have read them and researched the restaurants that interest you, come back and ask specific questions.

    11 Replies
    1. re: rrems

      Nah, let's just just send 'em to Les Quinze Nits.

      1. re: rrems

        Thanks for your suggestions. I have started my search. Looks like I can't pass Cinq Sentits. What other (one) restaurant with a tasting menu would you recommend in the 50 to 100 dollar range? I see that most of these places have lunch. Would you recommend going for lunch instead of dinner?

        1. re: vinoareni

          I also really liked Alkimia, which is priced similarly to Cinq Sentits. We went to both for dinner. Our one lunch was at La Dama, and I don't know if they have a tasting menu. What other restaurants looked interesting to you?

          1. re: vinoareni

            Very few restaurants in Barcelona will exceed your budget for a tasting menu of $100/person. Rule out Lasarte, Moo, Moments, Drolma, Abac, Arola and you will have the pick of all the others. Tasting menu at $50 is rare: Embat, Cat.181 might squeeze through. Maybe the euro will take a dive.
            Couple years ago, Cinc Sentits offered a simpler prix-fixed lunch, but I am not sure it is still the case; otherwise, high-end restaurants have the same menu/price/quality of food and service for lunch and dinner. It comes down what you prefer. Cinc Sentits, much lauded on this site, is very good and a "safe" choice, but there have been many other recommendations on this board. It seems like every other post is about eating in Barcelona

            1. re: PBSF

              Hello PBSF and best wishes for the holidays. If you can, we would appreciate your feedback on Gaig. And thanks also to other posters for their info. - we are also going to Hisop and Sauc. This is a special family trip (I have both my kids home from school)

              1. re: mtm2

                Gaig is very good. It doesn't get a lot of write up because his food is not showy as some of the other modern Catalan chefs. His cooking is modern Catalan but with none of the molecular aspect that defines many of the current chefs in Barcelona. His family has been in the restaurant business for generations and they know how to run a smooth restaurant: excellent service without being stuffy; the ambience is low key and relax but one feel pamper. The cost is about the same as others mentioned on this board. The only down side for some is that the dining room is located a basement though once seated it doesn't come into play.
                I don't know what are your plans beside Hisop and Sauc which by the way are both excellent. Foodwise, they with Gaig fall in the 'modern Catalan' category with Hisop being most molecular. Also depends on how much time you are in Barcelona to mix it up a bit. There are many good, more traditional, less expensive and less formal options. You might consider Fonda Gaig, a restaurant the Gaig family opened a few years ago serving updated traditional Catalan cooking in a modern lively atmosphere. Not inexpensive but lively, fun and informal. Depending on the age and food interests of your kids, too many tasting menus of modern Catalan restaurants can be taxing.

                1. re: PBSF

                  vinoreni: At the risk of sounding like I'm fawning, you will have a wonderful dining experience in Barcelona if you follow PBSF's advice. He has made many posts on dining in Barcelona and is careful to point out whether the cuisine is traditional or modern, the atmosphere presented by the restaurant(s) and the prices to be expected. Dig them all up and see what fits your tastes. My wife and I are seniors, prefer traditional cuisine and like to have our main meal at lunch (which is a mid-afternoon affair for American tourists in Barcelona). Looking at PBSF's list immediately above, we had lunch at Fonda Gaig based on his recommendation, enjoyed it greatly and thought the price quite acceptable.

                  I should mention one establishment that I think you won't find in a review of PBSF's posts that we also enjoyed immensely:
                  That was Carballiera, which specializes in traditional Galician cuisine. A lovely restaurant with lovely food, to our taste. A google search will display photos of some of their dishes, as is true of a number of Barcelona establishments.

                  Beautiful city, beautiful food. Enjoy!

                  1. re: sernoff

                    Thank you for the heads up on Carballeira. Good and reasonable Galician seafood places are hard to come by in Barcelona. The next time we are in Barcelona, we'll give it a try and also explore that little area down near the port. Somehow, the wide and heavy traffic Passeig d'Isabell II always presents a barrier to cross.

                    1. re: PBSF

                      thank you all! We are leaving for Barcelona tomorrow (weather permitting - flying from Toronto via Paris) and have added Fonda Gaig and Caralleira to the list - lots to choose from for our 8 days! Kids (15 and 19 and) are excited!
                      Thanks again!!

                      1. re: mtm2

                        8 days in Barcelona, you and your family will have time to explore a beautiful city. There such a variety of food that you'll have no problem filling those days. Lots of good pastries, hot chocolate/churro, tapas, pintxos, and all. And eating in Barcelona does not have to be expensive, the pintxos/tapas places are welcoming (stay away from the big barn like places on the first few blocks of the Pg de Gracia) and so are the simple restaurants such as Sant Joan, etc. You kids are lucky. If your family want to get away for a day, I recommend Girona, a beautiful preserved medieval city and easy but train. And get up to Sarria and Gracia, couple of nice neighborhoods with good food and scene, just beyond the Diagional.

                        1. re: PBSF

                          Thanks PBSF for all the advice. We are looking forward to our trip.

        2. Just got back from a weekend in Barcelona and would highly recommend Comerc24 - our evening there was outstanding, excellent food, service, atmosphere, I can't rave about it enough! We were slightly worried about our booking being at the bar but it actually turned out perhaps better than being seated - it's a lot more lively and you get to see the food being prepared in the kitchen. We went for the festival tasting menu, too many highlights to choose just one outstanding dish I'm afraid!

          Con Gracia was a little disappointing - the food was nice, but not excellent and lacked any 'wow' factor, although the wine pairings were very, very good.

          Managed to get a lunch in at Santa Maria - we walked right in on a Saturday afternoon which was lucky! Went for the excellent value 17 Euro tasting menu, highlights were the mushroom and white asparagus soup, and a potato cake with poached egg (although every dish was pretty good!).

          Cal Pep was very average - felt it was a bit of a tourist trap with them pushing the more expensive items on the menu (there is no printed menu so you need to rely on their recommendations). I think we have been spoilt by the fantastic (and a lot cheaper) tapas in Seville, as we really thought Cal Pep was very over rated - and expensive for what it is.

          Good tapas at Tapac 24 though, with the highlight being the sardinallas and the 'rabbit ribs', tiny little rabbit cutlets with a delicious aioli, perfect bar snacks!