Spain has some of the most talked about food in the world. Leading the gastronomic charge is Barcelona which is the capital of Catalonia, a region rich in gastronomic history and fiercely proud of its culinary traditions. Once a culinary powerhouse in the 13th and 14th centuries Catalonia has always been at the forefront of cuisine around the world. Some of the first recipe books ever written were by Catalan Authors. With all of these traditions, Barcelona is still on the cutting edge of innovation and modern cuisine, home to world renowned chefs and restaurants.
Tapas: The Perfect Bar Food
In recent years Tapas has become very popular around the world. If you are looking for truly authentic Tapas then Barcelona is the place for you. Tapas is loved throughout the city and new restaurants are always opening pushing the boundaries and drawing more and more food lovers to the city each year. You are encouraged to use your fingers when eating tapas and share from each other’s plates, so it always makes for a fun social experience letting go of the basic protocol and getting stuck into some food. Tapas dishes come in all manner of shapes and sizes, Patatas Bravas, fried cubes of potato served with a spicy tomato sauce and garlic aioli, is always a popular choice on a tapas menu.
Croquettes are also quite a popular choice the filling usually made from ham, pork or seafood mixed with a thick béchamel sauce with various veg, then bread crumbed and deep fried. Often times the beauty of tapas is the fact that it’s so simple yet so delicious.
Barcelona’s Neighborhood Markets
The neighborhood markets of Barcelona are known throughout the world. Each part of the city has its own unique market belonging to that particular area. They are always thriving with the freshest of ingredients which make Catalan cuisine what it is. La Boqueria Food Market, the largest of its kind in Europe, is located in the heart of Barcelona. This is a must see when visiting the city. Ingredients from all over the world can be found here as well as those Mediterranean ingredients essential to Catalan cuisine. As well as fresh fruit and vegetable stalls, restaurants and bars are scattered throughout the market which can be found packed to the brim during the lunch time rush. El Pinotxo is located at the entrance to the market and is one of the more popular restaurant/bars in the market. It’s known for its great food and drink and its high top stools.
Barcelona has such a rich food culture that it should be on every foodies list of places to visit. It stems from a deep history of great ingredients which have resulted in some classic world class dishes. Right now Barcelona is a modern city on the cusp of culinary greatness. With some of the best chefs in the world opening new restaurants and experimenting with different tastes and new dishes coming to light everyday it will be exciting to see the food scene in Barcelona progress even more over the next few years.
Contributor: Jack Comey
Jack is a food and travel blogger from Dublin, Ireland. From his career as a chef, as well as a love for travel, he enjoys sharing his perspective and advice. Learn more about Jack and his travels at www.jackcomey.com.