Top 10 Barcelona Food and Drink

Spanish Gastronomy has enjoyed great fame over recent years, and Catalunya has been at the forefront, with Catalan Chef Ferran Adrià's restaurant "El Bulli" - just north of Barcelona in Roses, near Girona - being voted the best restaurant in the world for the past 3 years! So what's all the fuss about?! Well, here are some of the best food and drink treats that you can't miss out on when visiting Barcelona.

Las Ramblas of Barcelona

1. Pa Tomaquet. Sounds simple, but is delicious. this is basically bread, rubbed with ripe tomatoes ( also sometimes garlic) and drizzled with olive oil. Almost all "bocadillos" are made this way (baguette sandwiches), as well as many tapas and side dishes in restaurants. Try it with all i oli (like a garlic style mayonnaise) - it's delicious!

2. Paella. Barcelona has a big port and some of the finest seafood restaurants in Spain, so it's no surprise to find many Paella menus on offer - leave the ones with photos up and down las ramblas and head to Barceloneta - the old fisherman's quarter for your speciality Paella.

3. Jamon Iberico. Iberian Hams are famed all over the world and especially the " Pata Negra" variety. This "black hooved" ham is fed exclusively on acorns, giving a destinctive taste and is the most expensive variety. However, a stop off at the boqueria market on Las Ramblas makes a great stock up for a picnic with many more economical hams on offer!

4. Cava from the Penedes. The French have champagne, the Catalans have Cava, made from the fantastic and world renowned Penedes region, about 45 minutes south of Barcelona. Codorniu, Seguras Viudas, Freixenet are just a few to name, and if you have time, you can even visit the Cava region for a tour.

5. Another popular addition to the drinks of Catalunya is "Anis de Mono" which is fabricated in nearby Badalona. This is a spirit made from aniseed, and is especially served in restaurants after dinner (or lunch), and a favourite with the sweet breads at Christmas and other occasions.

Magic Fountains at Montj�ic

6. Cocas. Cocas are sweet breads and pastries which are served at any kind of celebration. The most popular time is probably the festival of Sant Joan (like bonfire night in Spain) on Midsummer night. Confitured fruits, pine nuts and almonds are typical toppings. Accompanied by liqueures such as Anis de Mono (above).

7. Calçots & Romesco. Calçots are a cross between a leek and a spring onion, and are delicious. The whole ceremony of calçots is great fun, as they are char-grilled on a barbeque and eaten with hands (and often a bib!). The sauce which accompanies is called Romesco, and is made with dried vegetables (gnoras), almonds, garlic, and other ingredients. Has to be done!

8. Snails! Ok, this might not sound too appealing, but the snails in Catalonia are great! Often pan fried in loads of salt and pepper, or with garlic, this is something you HAVE to try!

9. Turrones for Christmas. If you're lucky enough to visit Barcelona near Christmas, be sure to pick up some turrones. Although not strictly from Catalonia, Turrones are like nougat bars with nuts, almonds, egg yolks and sugar. There are also chocolate variations, and make a great gift for someone!

10. Chocolate con churros. This is another one really for wintertime, and is a thick hot cholocate drink served with "churros" which are like piped doughnuts, but straight and sprinkled with sugar. A favourite for that sugar boost after a night out on the town!

Are your tastebuds tingling? All of our Barcelona Apartments have a fully equipped kitchen for you to enjoy your Barcelona food and drink in the comfort of your own home away from home!

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