2.7.13

Eating Our Way Through Barcelona

Barcelona kisses in Placa Reial - "Royal Plaza"
 Slowly but surely, spring has slipped into a mellow Belgian summer, and the days have gotten longer and longer. Western Europe is reporting one of the coldest spring seasons on record, and they aren't predicting a freakishly long, hot summer to make up for the extra wear and tear on our boots and rain coats. As soon as the sun makes an appearance, Roeselare's sidewalks erupt with smiling shoppers and the terraces are full of friends meeting over aperitifs and coffee.

By early May, Chris and I were totally over waiting for that occasional sun break, so we booked last minute flights and headed south to Barcelona. I am finding that summer is the hardest time for me to blog (for many reasons), but if I don't write about our trips, I quickly forget all of the fantastic meals that we had, the places we stayed and the adventures that we shared. Barcelona became one of our favorite summer spots, so I expect to get back some day and I want to revisit a lot of the restaurants that we discovered.

Chris and I met up with our best friend, Reece, and we were lucky to get a really great rate at a B&B right on the beach, Bed and Beach Barcelona Guesthouse. The location was perfect since the guys really just wanted to relax on the beach, and I had the flexibility to easily get into town and explore on my own. In my last blog, I posted about my relaxing day exploring Park Guell. There is so much to see and do around Barcelona that you could probably spend months in the city and not even scratch the surface!

We got a lot of food/drink recommendations from Reece's coworker who spends loads of time in Barcelona. We tried almost every single place that she suggested, and we were never once disappointed! Megan, if you ever read my little blog post, thanks a million for taking the time to share some Barcelona love with us! Below is a list of the restaurants and bars that we loved. I don't want to forget these places, and I would love to pass on some (of Megan's) information to others who are planning a trip to the lively city of Barcelona!



{Fancy, great food, wonderful service - pics 3-5 below} Since we were celebrating Chris' birthday, we went all out at Tragaluz! The boys enjoyed crab leg as an appetizer and then we all had steak and sea bass meals. The decoration in the restaurant is modern and funky, and I especially loved that you walk through an open kitchen to get to your table. 

{Dark, rustic and artsy basement bar around the corner from Tragaluz - no pics} This place was fantastic! Think red suede chairs, chill music and mysterious, muted conversations. The bar is well known for their gin and tonics, and you get this sense that authors and artists of days past used to meet here to dream and discuss the meaning of life. 

{Authentic tapas, locals, great prices and amazing white sangria - pic 2 below} I would have eaten here every single meal if the boys had allowed it! This place is tucked away and it seems to be frequented by mostly a local crowd. The white sangria was incredible and the tapas were unique and reasonably priced. This was my favorite meal in Barcelona!

- Barcelona Beach Food - 
{The beach is packed with restaurants selling paella and sangria - pics 6 - 9 below} We spent a lot of time at the beach, but luckily we only had one meal there. For our last day, we decided to try beach side paella, and honestly it was not that good. I don't remember the name of the place, but we won't go back, and I won't recommend it. Don't expect a lot from food on the beach. Maybe just sip on some sangria and take in the views . . .  and the volleyball players. 

{On top of The Condes Hotel and such amazing views! Pics 12 + 13 below} Think sweeping views of Gaudi's most famous buildings, good burgers and fancy people. We went for aperitifs, and the boys decided to try their burgers. They were super impressed with their meals, and I was completely taken with the views! 

 - Tibidabo Mountain (half way up at least) - 
{Half way up there is a casual bar with a great view of Barcelona - pics 10 + 11 below} We tried to get up to Tibidabo Mountain, but by the time we made it half way up, the weather changed and we decided to stop for a drink at a simple bar with an amazing view. I don't remember the name, but if you take the touristy tram to it's last stop, you'll see the place on your right-hand side. 

Oh, this is just a darling cafe on Placa Reial.