Barcelonais known for its nightlife and delicious, low-priced tapas. However, the capital of Catalonia can also offer some exclusive experiences that combine unique locations with excellent food and wine: to enjoy them without spending a fortune, you just need to know where to look. So here they are: a list of venues of where to eat in Barcelona to enjoy unique food experiences.
Up to 25 euros
The perfect day starts with a custom-made omelette and a sea view for €14. An experience you can enjoy at the Wave restaurant inside the W Barcelona, a splendid five–star hotel in the district of Barceloneta, a few steps away from the harbour. Whether traditional-style or low-fat, on ordering your omelette you may decide to lower the number of yolks and increase the amount of egg white. Then, it can be filled to taste with ham, bacon, mushrooms, peppers, cheese or herbs. At this price, you can also afford to order a coffee.
If you wish to experience a memorable sunset at the end of the day, climb to the 26th floor of the Hotel W Barcelona as far as the Eclipse Bar and enjoy the sight as you sip the signature cocktail of the establishment: Ketel One vodka, shochu infusion, watermelon and enormous ice cubes.
From 25 to 50 euros
Anyone passing through the shopping precinct will certainly succumb to the charm of a magnificent hotel like El Palace Barcelona, fresh from a recent makeover. The starred Caelis restaurant run by chef Roman Fornell is a mandatory stopover: on this budget you can taste a selection of three matured cheeses from Xavier (in Tolosa) and Catalonia (€20).
Alternatively, if you fancy something sweet, pay a visit to the fine terrace set amidst jasmine and orange blossom with an all-round view of the city: there you can order a coffee with a cake or pastry.
If luscious greenery and a view is what you are after, an alternative location for a stylish break is on the top floor terrace of the Hotel DO as you admire the gothic rooftops of the Ciutat Vella, Barcelona’s Old City. Here you may like to order a Paella rice of deboned Iberian spare ribs and snow peas at €17.60, or a selection of tapas such as gazpacho, roast octopus or Catalan cream.
From 50 to 100 euros
In the Eixample district, chef Charles Gaig owner of the Gaig restaurant offers the quintessential gourmet experience with a 7-course menu at €68, whose pièce de résistance is the kokotxas, hake cheeks with Santa Pau beans, followed by crisp suckling pig with strawberries and spring onion.
If you go to Barcelona don't miss the chance to try the cuisine signed by Paolo Casagrande, house-chef of the two Michelin-starred restaurant Lasarte, who has created his dishes in collaboration with the legendary Martin Berasategui. You can reserve a private dining room above the kitchen enclosed by glass walls, enabling you to watch the chef as he goes through the motions of his creative activity.
On this budget you may not afford to wade your way through the whole gourmet menu, but you can certainly taste something completely different in the way of ham: the Gran Reserva Iberian Cured ham (€36). Follow it up with an extraordinary dish of sea bass in squill fish stock, braised sea snails on vegetable juice with truffle and clam mayonnaise at 52 Euro.
On the premises of the Mandarin Hotel Barcelona, chef Carme Ruscalleda and her son Raül Balam were almost immediately assigned two Michelin stars on opening their Moments restaurant in 2010. Unfortunately, the gourmet menu is more expensive than our budget allows for (€166) and offers 14 courses inspired by 14 cities in the world, from Hong Kong to Bodrum.
Nonetheless, there is no lack of delicious dishes at more affordable prices such as pigeon stuffed with Duroc suckling pig and Sakura cherries and leaves (€53); why not pair it with a Pinot Nero recommended by sommelier Fernando Pavón. Your budget also allows for a dessert such as "Flight to Africa: pistachios, chocolate and spices". A sublime experience.
Our new five-part video series, 'The Secrets of Fine Dining', brings you incredible tips and tricks, straight from the chef’s kitchen, to level up your fine-dining cooking techniques and plating skills. Take a look.
From 28-30 October, join Fine Dining Lovers for a celebration of young culinary talent, when 12 global finalists will battle it out in Milan for the title of best young chef in the world - plus, join our first edition of Brain Food forum. See what's on.
Fine Dining Lovers teams up with the Culinary Institute of America, James Beard Foundation and Black Food Folks on the Better Business project to build stronger, more sustainable business practices for the industry.