29 August 2014

Food Glorious Food! Bloggers In Barcelona - Part Dos of Dos


If I had to choose one thing that summed up our trip to Barcelona the best, it would be the food. The wonderful, glorious food. Laura and I definitely got our fair share - in fact, we probably spent most of the trip in some great restaurant or other. I blame the unexpected torrential rain...

Anyone who knows me is aware that I'm something of an organiser. If there's one thing I can't stand, it's turning up in a new place and being clueless of where to start so I like a good plan of where to go and what to do. With a little help from Twitter, Trip Advisor, newspaper articles, tour guides and friend's recommendations, we arrived in the city with a decent strategy on how to tackle it. We didn't have to stick to it religiously, of course, but it certainly guided us through our short time there quite nicely. Following our first night on the rooftop of the Ohla Hotel and bar-hopping in the El Born area, we woke up that next morning with aching heads but a firm destination in mind for brunch.

EL QUIM - LA BOQUERIA MARKET

I'd noted that El Quim was highly spoken of by a few Barcelona regulars online. I knew it was in La Boqueria market but it took a little bit of hunting to find it. In the midst of the market action, El Quim is a sixteen meter long counter with eighteen stools surrounding a small kitchen area. Laura and I were lucky to grab seats straight away - it seemed to be a theme on this holiday that we always arrived at places just at the right time! We ordered ourselves a glass each of cava (it appeared to be the 'thing to do') and started ticking the boxes on the menu of the tapas dishes that took our fancy. We ate the most delicious patatas bravas, ham croquettes, two fried eggs with prawns in cava, fresh sardines and we even gave calf's foot and head in vinaigrette a try (we weren't that keen but it's good to try these things at least once!).

El Quim was one of my big Barcelona highlights; eating their amazing fresh food with a glass of bubbles in the middle of a bustling market was exciting! Incredible value for money too. A definite recommendation from me.


MILK

Brunch on the Saturday was at Milk, a bar/bistro run by an Irish couple and located in the Gothic Quarter of the city. Described on the website as being like a 'millionaires drawing room', it's certainly a place that has character and life. You can enjoy their Recovery Brunch everyday from 9am until 4pm. Laura and I shared the salmon eggs benedict - served with potatoes - along with the American pancakes served with Danish bacon and maple syrup. A yummy and enjoyable breakfast that set us up for the day ahead perfectly! 


FEDERAL

Federal Cafe is another great little spot for brunch that we visited on our last morning. It's bright, airy and homely. We took two cushioned seats in the window and enjoyed fresh juices, a croissant with mascarpone and raspberry coulis, toasted scones with home made jam and scrambled eggs with asparagus, caramelised onions, halloumi cheese and toast. Wonderful stuff.

And scones for breakfast? Can we make this a prerequisite in London please?


TAPAS TOUR WITH FOOD LOVER

For our second night, we decided to book ourselves onto a tapas tour with Food Lover Tour. It was an opportunity to experience a few tapas spots the locals frequent, avoiding the typical tourist traps. It was EUR89 each, started at 7.30pm and didn't finish until around 1.30am! Our group of nine foodies and two guides visited three different venues where we enjoyed some delicious dishes and great drinks.

The first venue: La Bodegueta Provenca

This is an "after hour bar/restaurant" well-known by the people of Barcelona. We grazed on a few appetizers and a glass of wine as the guides talked us through typical Catalan cuisine. It was also the place where I shockingly discovered that I actually like anchovies! 


The second venue: Colmado

By now, the rain was crashing down outside but we were safe and dry at the back of this warm and dimly lit little tavern. At Colmado we were served up some very nice dishes and we both had our first ever taste of vermouth - fortified, flavoured wine. I now adore it!


The last stop: Bardot Restaurant

The final tapas experience was a proper gastronomical and gourmet dinner. Described by Time Out as 'the best designed restaurant in Barcelona', at beautiful Bardot we were presented with potato and ham croquettes, octopus, scallops, rock fish, ox tail, Crema Catalana, chocolate cake and probably one of the nicest joints of salted medium-rare cooked beef I've had. As well as all that, the food was paired with some fantastic red and white wines. We got much more for our money on this tour than we expected.


***

So in summary, Barcelona is an amazing city for eating and drinking. The locals are so passionate about their food and it shows. If you're planning a foodie trip, why not give these places a go (especially El Quim!) and learn all about the Catalan cuisine on a Food Lovers Tour. 

I feel lucky to have such a fantastic city with so much to offer just a couple of hours flight away. I hope to be back sometime soon to discover even more.

12 comments:

  1. Wow! Amazing pictures! I love Barcelona, we've been about 5 times and sampled some lovely food. Next time we go we definitely need to be more organised as your pictures look stunning and are making my mouth water!

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    1. Five times eh? You must know it pretty well! I'll have to come to you next time I visit (which I hope won't be too long away!)
      Cx

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  2. Oh my goodness, I haven't had my dinner yet and now I'm so hungry! This all looks amazing, so jelous
    Lx

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  3. This is the ultimate food porn! I'm so jealous, it all looks amazing! xx
    Jessie @ All Things Beautiful

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  4. Fantastic photos, I love Spanish food, especially Paella washed down with sangria!
    Lots of love,
    Angie
    SilverSpoon London

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    1. I read that Barcelona don't do great paella (it's not one of their dishes funnily enough) so we didn't have it there. I do love it though! We definitely indulged in the sangria
      Cx

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  5. I shouldn't have read this post when I was already hungry. I LOVE Spanish cuisine, and I really, really want to go to Spain!

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  6. Love all of these photos!! It looks like you girls had an amazing & delicious time! Those are the most beautiful bloody mary's I have ever seen!!

    xo, B
    www.BKCsquared.com

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  7. Ahh Caroline I've loved both of your Barcelona posts... My school friends & I decided that after our Leavers Ball, a week in this wonderful city was worth so much more than going to somewhere like Magaluf or Kavos. This was the best decision we ever made, we all fell in love with the city, night life and *oh my god* the food. The market on Las Ramblas was like walking through a fresh, multicoloured heaven of fruit and food.
    I'm especially liking the look of Milk- such a cool menu with the rabbit from Alice!
    (Both you & Laura are looking lovely- as always!-)
    Emily xx
    My GingerBread Journey

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  8. I'm dying at all these delicious food photos - especially that plate of asparagus, scrambled egg and halloumi. So simple, so mouthwateringly good! And that dish of pulpo from La Bodegueta...wow. You and Laura look like you've been having a whale of a time. Such a lovely way to celebrate Laura's birthday, I've been enjoying the posts from both of you!

    Tamsin xx | A Certain Adventure

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  9. I love the idea of going on a Tapas Tour - It could quite possibly become one of my favourite pastimesI think! The salted beef looks delicious and perfectly well cooked!

    Katie <3

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