5 TAPAS BARS
5 TAPAS BARS
OUR personal 5 FAVORITE
Barcelona has a lot of restaurants and tapas bars to offer. Including really good ones, but also real tourist traps. That you don’t fall into one of these traps, we want to name our personal favorites and give you a few tips on how to distinguish a “trap” from a good restaurant.
Note: we only name restaurants with Spanish cuisine here – mainly tapas. Because you are in Barcelona and certainly wanted to discover the city from a culinary point of view. Sure, there’s everything else from pizza to Thai, but you won’t find that in this article.
Ready? Then let’s eat!
Our personal top 5
OUR MOST IMPORTANT
First, you should download the following app to your phone: Foursquare. I’ve already avoided one or the other mistake and discovered one or the other great restaurant.
Alternatively, you can usually trust the Google reviews. The Google rating is better known, but you should still be careful – because it’s also easier to cheat here…
And yet, you should still pay attention to these 4 points!
- Never ever: eat or drink on the Ramblas or near the Ramblas: you can quickly get rid of 15 euros for a beer. And the food... well, let's say it's appropriate.
- It's a bit different with tapas, but if you see a full place at 7pm, it's usually tourists. On the other hand, if you see a full bar after 9 p.m., then it’s locals and they should know what’s good ;)
- If the restaurant can offer you the menu in all possible languages... better not go in. If the card is only available in Catalan + Spanish, possibly also in English, then you know who the focus customers are.
- And if someone in front of the restaurant tries to persuade you to come in, that's an extra sign to keep going!
Top Tip 1
Bar del Pla (Born)
The Bar del Pla is one of my all-time favourites! And I was delighted to go again after the long Corona period! Admittedly, it’s not an insider tip – I’m not the only “blogger” who loves these great tapas. Nonetheless, I am listing the bar here!
Because this is where we used to go regularly (before COVID) with all the people who visited us in Barcelona! Why? Quite simply: the atmosphere is relaxed, young and the tapas are simply delicious! These are not “standard” tapas, no, they all still have a special “toce”, a refined addition.
The prices are moderate: of course, the Iberico pork costs more than a salad – it depends on what you choose. Just a little tip: if you like one of the tips of the day that you are told, ask about the price beforehand. We once ordered a mushroom dish, didn’t ask the price and then our ears were ringing 😉 It was an expensive type of mushroom…
My all-time favorites are here: Can’t really say as they always have a changing menu. But if it’s on the menu, then it’s the Secreto de Iberico (the “secret” fillet of Iberico pork) or the Canelón (pasta cannelloni with different fillings), or like in the picture, the mellijones a la thailandesa (Thai style mussels).
Reservation: can’t hurt!
Bar Morryssom was right next door to our first flat when we moved to Barcelona. That’s why it was – and still is – a popular destination when we go out for tapas. Here you will find the so-called “standard” tapas. That doesn’t mean these are boring! They’re traditional, homemade and very, very good… but a bit greasy 😉
Everyone would probably walk past the Bar Morryom: because it is neither stylish nor chic. The climate here is harsh. The friendliness of the waiters… is not rated highly by everyone 😉 But that’s what makes the bar special.
There are only 4 tables on the terrace, but there is another large room on the first floor, which is often crowded. And I have a little anecdote about this: the waiter wants to take our order, but it’s really loud – Spaniards aren’t exactly the quietest: so the waiter hisses into the room and all the guests fall silent 😀 He takes the order, and the conversations continue.
My all-time favorites here are: the mellijones a la marinera (mussels in tomato sauce) and the pescaditos fritos (small fried fish).
Reservation: it is not possible to reserve a table. They also don’t have a website…
Video: Here you get a little insight behind the scenes of the bar. The father is now retired, the sons have taken over the bar. I took the photo below with one of them.
Top Tip 2
Bar Morryssom (Eixample)
Top Tip 3
BAR PERIKETE (BORN/BARCELONETA)
Bar Perikete is located right between the Born district and Barceloneta. In a small side street, you will be attracted by the colorful signs… The interior is “quaint” and there are an incredible number of hams hanging from the ceiling, which slowly ripen in the breeze of the sea. Typically Spanish! But the team is young and the audience goes all over the place! You even sit inside, somehow outside and can see everything!
The tapas are again “standard” here, but that doesn’t mean anything bad here either: traditional Pimientos del Padrón, typical Catalan salsichas, all kinds of mussels, patatas bravas… There is something for every taste here!
My all-time favorites here are: chipironcitos fritos (small fried squids – but those aren’t the rings) and the pimientos del padrón (small fried peppers with salt).
Reservation: only for large groups, who can then “only” order one menu. Just go there!
Tip: This is a wine bar! The choice is huge! But of course beer and Vermuth also taste good here 😉
Top Tip 4
La Pepita (Eixample)
On the edge of the Eixample, at the foot of the hip Gracia district, lies the restaurant La Pepita…. And it feels like everyone wants to go there! The restaurant is small, it is difficult to reserve a table and an additional branch called “Mini Pepita” was opened two houses away. I think that says it all. The restaurant is stylishly furnished, a real Instagram restaurant.
And even the tapas are somehow stylish 😉 As in the Bar del Pla, these defy the “normal” tapas, a little something extra here, something experimental there and that’s how these beauties are created!
My all-time favorites here are: coca de saridina ahumado (smoked sardines on a kind of toast) and the patatas bravas.
Reservation: you can supposedly, I’ve never managed to reserve a table… Therefore: Either come before all the Spaniards – from 7.30 p.m. when the kitchen opens, or wait until something becomes available 😉
Top Tip 5
La Singular (Gracia)
Now we are in the middle of the alleys of Gracia! The small local La Singular is something between a tapas restaurant and an à la carte restaurant. The dishes are smaller and – like the tapas – you have to order several, but there are no typical tapas here. No bravas, no padrones, no fried fish. And currently (because of COVID) there is “only” the possibility to order a menu.
The restaurant itself is really “cute”… and so small that the tables are very close together and you can hardly close the door from the toilet.
The dishes are prepared with great attention to detail, have an international touch and yet somehow Spanish.
My all-time favorites are here: hard to say at the moment given the changing menus. Before COVID, the lamb dish was a dream and the tuna tartare…
Reservation: yes, and you’re usually lucky!
Jacqueline and I enjoyed our little “Christmas party” here in 2020 😉
Text and image rights: © Céline Mülich, 2021 – 2022