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Barcelona has a stellar and wide ranging food scene from tiny little tapas bars to molecular gastronomy. The food scene is definitely a HUGE part of why we are returning there today in fact! In honor of our return to Barcelona, the city we fell in love with just six months ago, we thought we should highlight our top 5 tapas bars! They have a whole meal time dedicated to tapas (hello tapas hour, my favorite hour!) so of course, we have to share our favorites!
Top 5 Tapas Bars in Barcelona
Carrer de Montcada, 22
I know we gushed on and on about El Xampanyet in our Eat Local in El Born guide but we just can’t help but mention it again. It seriously is one of our all time favorite places in Barcelona. There is something so undeniably Catalan about this establishment, from the housemade vermouth and cava, to the ever faithful local patrons, and of course the heaping plates of jamon. Everything screams old school Barcelona despite the mobs of tourists who visit. So go there, soak it all in and be prepared to shove your way to the bar to get service. While they may have tables (sign that you are probably a tourist), the best way to enjoy El Xampanyet is by standing at the counter and soaking it all in like the locals.
Quimet y Quimet
Carrer del Poeta Cabanyes, 25
Quimet y Quimet is another old school tapas bar located in Poble Sec away from the tourist heart of Barcelona. This tapas bar excels in presenting over the top ingredients like caviar, tuna belly and foie gras in such an unassuming and slightly brusque manner you almost forget you are eating “fancy” food. But you can’t because the food is that good. So crowd in, throw your napkins on the floor (or be reprimanded), belly up to the bar and indulge in some of the best and probably cheapest “fancy” food!
Carrer de la Reina Cristina, 7
Can Paixano is a tapas bar, yes, but more than anything it is a cava bar. We are talking about amazing bottles of cava at ridiculous prices. Try 10€ MAX for bottles (and that’s the best quality cava too, there is no bad cava here). However, if you want a bottle of cava you have to eat as well. They serve a wide range of basic cold and hot tapas including sausages and croquettes plus amazing sandwiches. The menu is all in Catalan so it makes it a little tricky to navigate but it is worth it, especially since you never know what you’ll get! Oh and this bare gets slammed! Practice patience, as you make your way up to the bar.
Plaça Comercial, 1
Bormuth is a more modern tapas bar or rather restaurant as you do need to snag a table in order to enjoy their tapas here. They have a selection of traditional tapas but they also mix things up with dishes with a more modern twist. Our three favorite dishes here have to be the lentil salad (especially during the summer!), melted goat cheese with roasted red bell peppers, and the cider braised chorizo. I think Bormuth has my favorite chorizo… At Bormuth don’t forget to check out their vermouth as they have a wonderful aged vermouth rosso which is to die for!
Bar La Plata
Carrer de la Mercè, 28
Our last tapas bar should come as no surprise for those of you have done your tapas research…. No, that’s just us? Well if you don’t know this place let us introduce you. Bar La Plata is a tiny little tapas bar in the gothic quarter that specializes and only has four dishes. Oh, and they were voted best tapas bar in Barcelona.
This little hole in the wall knows what they are doing. They serve wine out of the barrels and the tapas they do serve are simple but well deserving of the crowd they draw. Our favorite tapas they make is the small fried fish (peixet fregit). They are served fried and salted and you just dig in, head, bones and all! They also have amazing pan con tomate as well. While the bar doesn’t always have a local feel (thanks to their popularity) you can always get there early and try to blend in with the loyal locals who aren’t giving up their favorite tapas bar!
So these are our top 5 tapas bars in Barcelona.
As we are on our way there now are there any tapas bars we missed? Any must visit that we should hit up? We are going to be in Barcelona for a month and a half so any suggestions are welcome, especially since we are writing a guide to Catalan cuisine!!
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