I have to say I did not have one snack in Barcelona that (REALLY) disappointed me. Everything was really good, which is not common. You get sucked up into touristic snacks on the road, and you find yourself with a very dry piece of fruit or overly cooked/undercooked anything. But I can confidently say the food in Barcelona was very impressive, regardless of the price tag and location.
The easiest choice of snack of even dinner was tapas. The word derives from the Spanish word for “to cover” or “tapar.” Historically, it started out when drinker covered their sherry drinks with slices of bread or meat to prevent fruit flies. Since dinner is served around nine p.m. to 11 p.m., it’s only natural to go starving around six (like me). So between lunch and dinner, people started to nibble on tapas. Now it’s basically small side dishes that you can order before a proper meal, or nowadays, even order a couple for a complete meal.
This one seen above is called Patatas bravas (fried potato cubes) and is a quite popular Spanish tapas dish. The french fries of Spanish tapas, if you will. The sauce is usually spicy, but after a couple portions in various bars and restaurants, we found that this is not always the case.
Impossible to order when you have a menu that has more than 20 something varieties. If you feel really stressed out (which happens to me often when I have a big menu), you can ask for some recommendations and the waiters always seem to be quite open and nice about helping you out. We started out with maybe two to three dishes and then ordered more when needed (which turned out to be every time). It can be tricky to order when you are ordering a couple of small dishes and you never know if it would be too much or too less. The safest way would be to order maybe one or two per person and order more later. Asking the waiters can be helpless because it depends how hungry you are and how much of a big eater you are too.
Patatas bravas in a white sauce at La Pepita, a lovely little tapas place.
While I was walking through Carrer de Ferran, which is a street that links Place Sant Jaume and the famous La Rambla, I found myself talking away without an answer. I looked around and G was nowhere to be found. I started to panic a bit but then found him looking into the window of this. This happens occasionally, for him food and for me, shoes, sweets and furniture. Of course, we had to go in and get some. (These shops seem to be everywhere around the city. The one we went to was Enrique Tomas)
G expressed his delight by sharing his comments about each and every piece. Not kidding. Every single one of them. “Mmmmm,” (kissing fingertips), “look, look,” “so good,” “Mmmmm,” (waving hands in the air), “look at the color,” “so soft yet chewy.” You get the picture. He was really sad when he finished everything.
Pinchos are part of the tapas family but the only difference would be that it’s “pinched” or “spiked” with a skewer or toothpick and it usually refers to one. Like one pincho, but a plate of potato tapas. There were numerous bars that serve pinchos and it’s pretty darn hard to decide where to go. We ended up going to one that was on Carrer de Ferran. Good luck in choosing one. Or just all of them.
There was another place that was recommended to us, but we just didn’t have the time/empty stomach to try their food. This place is called Butipà, and serves sandwiches, hot dogs and other yummy snacks. If you are in the neighborhood, check it out (and let me know how it was!).
- Enrique Tomas: Carrer de Ferran, 55, 08002 Barcelona.
- La Pepita: Carrer de Còrsega, 343, 08037, Barcelona.
- Butipà: Ramelleres, 16-18-20, Barcelona.
All photos by rachelsanghee