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It can all be a little overwhelming, the city may not be huge but the culture, activities, events, eateries etc. is vast. So we have taken it upon ourselves to amalgamate our local 12 years experience in the city via our blog. Whether you are planning on coming over for the festivals, want to find out vegan eats or general insider information, we will keep you in the loop.
There are lots of claims as to where doughnuts originally come from, with one theory stating that they were invented in North America by Dutch settlers and another suggests that Hanson Gregory, an American, professed to have invented the ring-shaped doughnut in 1847. Then there’s the doughnut recipe, predating earlier examples, that has been discovered in an recipe book written in 1800 by Baroness Dimsdale, the wife of Baron Thomas Dimsdale in Hertfordshire, UK. Well we’d like to say thanks to all those that contributed to the creation of the doughnut, as we love this sweet confectionary that comes in different sizes, shapes, fillings and toppings for us all to appreciate.
La Perla de Oro (The Gold Pearl) is part fresh food grocery store, part restaurant and brilliantly simple and authentic. You’ll find yourself among locals ordering their usual bocadillo or tapas. This Raval based place has been managed by several owners and is now in the hands of Frenchman Julien and Anouchka Gautier from Extremadura in Spain, a couple that let their influences resonate through the food. They regularly go to France to find products to create their inviting and tasty menu. As for the bread, they buy this from local bakery Baluard, known for delicious and excellent varieties.
Sant Antoni continues to be one of the top places to hang out, have a spot of lunch, brunch and more. Federal Cafe, Tarannà, Café Cometa and Ido DO Balear are just some of the reasons why people head over to this part of town. Els Sortidors del Parlament has been on our restaurant list for sometime, they offer a sublime selection of good tapas and it has an authentic rustic establishment, with exposed brick wall, wines on the shelves, and barrels for you to stand around or sit by to have a glass of vermut and a tapa.
Brunch is something that has risen tremendously in Barcelona city. Places like New York and London have a steady reputation of fulfilling the part of the day where you tuck into a combination of breakfast and lunch. With pancakes, eggs benedict and bacon very much on the menu among other savoury and sweet dishes, you will now find an abundance of places to go to get your brunch on whether you’re in Gràcia, Eixample, Poble Sec or many other barrios.
Alaparra in the Poblenou district, has only been open a few months and is already leaving quite an impression when it comes to wine – in a city like Barcelona, that is saying something. Spread over two floors it offers over 250 varieties of wine, with a particular focus on local Catalan labels. Almost half of the wines can be tasted and the majority are affordable, priced between 4 to 10 euros.
Eggs – we all know they are full of protein, are a key ingredient when it comes to a cooked breakfast and can be cooked in lots of different methods. Chicken eggs are the most popular, however you will find small gourmet quail eggs used in tapas dishes. It is interesting then, that Barcelona is now home to the first eggs restaurant L’Eggs, which is dedicated to a variety of dishes but mostly consisting of this dairy product. Why is it making a buzz? Well chef Paco Perez, famous for his avant-garde cooking style, is behind the concept.
IKRA IS NOW CLOSED
It isn’t everyday that you get the opportunity to pair Spanish cuisine with Russian dishes but that is exactly what happens at Ikra. Set up with the intention to introduce locals to Russian food and located on Carrer de Roger Llúria in the Eixample district, you get the essence of an elegant yet down to earth restaurant. The interior design is minimalist and simple with neat little touches such as the plywood bar, colourful cushions and white tiled walls. The space is flexible allowing them to convert it to host their popular jazz nights, afterwork events and football screening – where locals can socialise.
When walking around in Barcelona it isn’t hard to miss the surge of frankfurt places and hamburger joints (hamburgueserías) in the city. The average sausage place may not have had an ounce of cool factor when compared to its competitors but perhaps that is changing because people tend to be partial for a sizzling sausage too. We recently wrote about Idò DO Balear, where you can buy succulent types from the Balearic islands and they are also popular during the calçotada season.
Let’s be honest, we don’t all like salads. Even the ones that do, often desire something a little creative every so often when selecting a healthy vegetarian option eating out. Believe it or not, even some of the team prefer to have an option rather than meat from time to time. More and more places are offering tasty salads with interesting ingredients and creative tapas. Here we have selected a few places that offer alternative vegetarian options other than your usual onion and goat cheese tart.
If you have a soft spot for savory panadas, ensaïmadas (from Mallorca) and other goodies from the Balearic islands, you will be pleased to hear about new deli / cafe / bakery Idò D.O. Balear. Either grab a quick bite to take, take a seat inside or stock up on deli items for you to prepare delicious dishes at home. Set up by three women, Idò originated from the strong desire to bring back that element of grandma’s traditional cooking.