Saturday, October 8, 2011

Barcelona - Tapas Territory

When it comes to food portions, the Spanish have gotten it right.  Nobody wants to eat a whole lot of the same thing anymore.  With obesity becoming a problem in most of the developed world, everyone should just learn to eat in moderation.  Have Tapas – where you can get small doses of variety.  Yes, you can wash it down with a beer or Sangria.  In moderation, of course. 

Legend has it that when wine was offered to a Spanish King in medieval times, a piece of bread or cured meat was laid on top of the cup to protect its contents.  Henceforth, the variety of tapas (which in Spanish is taken from the word “Tapa” which refers to a lid or cover) grew and became as important as the alcohol itself.  Presumably so people don’t  keel over from too much alcohol on an empty stomach before dinner starts, and in Spanish terms, that is no earlier than 9pm.

Here’s some of the more memorable Tapas we ate in Barcelona.  Needless to say, they were all delish. 

Tapas 24’s McFoie Burger
Tapas, 24 is the brainchild of Carles Abellan, probably more well-known for his formal dining restaurant Comerc 24.  Like many other protégés, he too hailed from doing time under Ferran Adria at his famous but now defunct El Bulli. 

Lolita Taperia’s eggplant tempura with sweet molasses
Lolita Taperia was co-founded by Joan Martinez and Albert Adria, yes Ferran’s brother, initially known as Inopia.  Albert has since left the venture and Joan renamed it to a saucier Lolita with the signature red lipstick mark on all its paraphernalia. 

Cal Pep’s Potato omelet with mayo

 Cal Pep's deep fried peppers
Cal Pep is helmed by Pep Manubens, who oversees a busy live kitchen show at opening times.  The sights, smells and sounds are a delight as diners feast on the freshest of the day.  Food is kept simple and in its truest form so there is little to no dress up, pretty plates or foam!  And yes, I hear he is a good friend of Ferran too.

Maitea’s marinated sardine
For something more rustic, we tried Maitea and although coming away a little shaken from witnessing a petty theft right on the premises on our first night, it was vibrant and friendly.  Just don't sit too hear the door and don't leave your bag on the floor.  Tapas here were more traditional too with almost everything served on a slice of baguette.

Note: Many places don’t take reservations if your party is less than 4, you can either head there early, or have a beer, soak in the atmosphere, and wait.  Or perhaps name drop?  I hear Ferran is a good one..

Tapas, 24
Carrer de la diputacio, 269
Tel: +34-934880977

Lolita Taperia
Tamarit 104 · local 2-4
Tel: +34-934245231

Cal Pep
Placa de les Olles, 8
Tel: +34-933107961

Carrer de Casanova, 157

No comments:

Post a Comment