Barcelona Trip: Commerc 24, Lasarte or Alkimia?
My wife and I will be in Barcelona for four days and have reservations for Commerc 24, Lasarte and Alkimia. That's a lot of high-end dining, and we'd like to spend at least one or two nights roaming around and grazing and/or eating at less expensive, less fancy, "local" places. Given that, we're looking for opinions on which of the three restaurants listed above we could drop out of our plans. For those who have been to any of these places, we'd appreciate opinions or input on any of these choices, or ideally, input on which should make the cut.
All 3 places are very good restaurants. You will get a yes or no on each one. My advice is to go back to why you decided on these three. Not just a friend say the food at Comerc24 is 'good " but ask for specific. If you are picking these places because of some sort of tally, just delete the lowest score. I been to all three, Comerc24 and Aklimia multiple times:
Comerc24: modern and molecular, the Festival of Tapas consists of many small places; no rule as one can order as little or as much on their long menu; Not everything is great but enough to satisfy except for the restaurant critic; large, lively with a designer ambience. Because the size, service can varies depending on the waiter. If you want 'fun' evening with good food, this be the choice.
Alkimia: small and inimate; the best food of the three considering the price, modern with a bit of molecular. The tasting menu of about 6 course is nicely balance, subtle and refine. The decor and ambience suits the food, simple, modern and light. A good example of small chef own restaurant.
Lasarte: if budget is not an issue and one wants to the food of Martin Berasategui, this would be the place. I have never been a fan of his based on my two meals has his flagship restaurant near San Sebastian. I think his food is somewhat generic and what his ingredients should be for a 3 star chef. Many others disagree with me. Since his Lasarte in Barcelona is not 3 star, maybe I am being too harsh. I just don't find his combination are well thought out with too many ingredients and at times not well balanced. A scallop dish was too acidic with too much citrus; a squab dish a too sweet with too many fruits. Or the sea element too strong in a pork belly dish. As for the ambience and service, it is the best of the three. Suble gray walls, beautiful starched table cloth with nice spacing. The waitstaff is precise yet informal and knows the menu well. It adds up to fine dining.
One of the issue on this board is that many people who post are casual visitors and their posts are short and vague such as : my best meal is at Cinc Sentits, period; nothing more. It doesn't have much worth, other than a vote. This might be the only modern Catalan meal that they ever had.
There have been good detail post on Comerc24 and Alkmia. I would search and read them to get some details and specfics.
we had a great meal at Comerc 24 back in January - as PBSF, it's fun, we sat at the bar and had a great waiter, most entertaining. Food was exceptional - we have dined at a fair few higher end places throughout Europe and the UK and this is definitely up there with the best, perhaps because the atmosphere wasn't so 'stuffy'.