YOUR GUIDE TO ORDERING FOOD IN BARCELONA
Many travelers coming to Spain for the first time are surprised to discovered that Spanish food is very different from Mexican food. Our food is not spicy, and it has a lot of Mediterranean influences, mainly French, Italian and Arabic, with its own uniqueness due to the variety of landscapes that provide a wonderful selection of products to work with.
Discovering new foods is a wonderful part of traveling, but often uninitiated are lost at knowing what to order. In this Ultimate Guide to Spanish and Catalan Food we’ve compiled for you our local foodie knowledge to guide and inspire you when ordering food during your stay. Good appetite!
COLD CUTS AND CHEESE
Spanish is uber famous for its cured ham: Jamón. More exquisite than Italian prosciutto, it has somehow eclipsed other wonderful charcuteries. Some might have heard of chorizo, that for the most part lacks of the elegance of jamón, but there are other great delicacies to try. You can often order them as a platter or just grab a few slices at a food market.
You absolutely don’t need to limit your carbs intake to paella when you are in Barcelona. You definitely want to try it, but if you are a pasta and rice eater: the existence of marshals in the river deltas has made rice part of the local coastal landscape in many regions, and the historical connections with Italy have made pasta a staple in our kitchens.
FISH AND SEAFOOD
Spain is surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, so fish and seafood are intrinsically connected with local food. Besides, the different temperatures in each water (warmer in the Mediterranean, colder in the Atlantic) stimulate the growth of different fish and other edible sea creatures, what creates a very attractive variety of fish options in our menus. Plus airplanes allow us to receive fresh seafood from the other end of the country on the same day!
Spain mild weather is great for growing vegetables and fruit. And while nowadays the competition with foreign produce arriving by plane is fierce, most restaurants and market stalls are proud to serve local veggies that keep changing as the seasons evolve.
MORE TRADITIONAL SPECIALITIES
Tapas are a super convenient way to eat lunch on tour. This is why in all our full day city tours we stop for lunch at some great tapas restaurant. And while there’s no hoping from bar to bar like we do in our tapas tours above, there’s always enough variety to make it fun and exciting. Our guests often end up going back to those restaurants because they loved them so much!
DESSERTS AND OTHER TREATS
GREAT PRIVATE FOOD TOURS
But the truth is that planning a comprehensive meal schedule where you can try lots of different things requires a lot of research and it’s a huge time investment. The guides at ForeverBarcelona are all foodies, and that’s why there’s many food tour options that will help you getting in contact with flavorful specialties without having to go through the research nightmare. And unlike other companies, our food tours don’t have set stops with pre-ordered tastings: food is not included so you have the flexibility to decide where you want to be taken, what you want to eat, and ultimately… when you want to eat it. It’s ok to not make any purchase at a store or skip a bar and maybe go back on your own. We don’t get commissions from the venues we visit, so there’s no urge to make you spend there.
AWESOME PRIVATE CITY TOURS WITH A TAPAS LUNCH STOP
When we stop for lunch on our full day (and some of our half day) private city tours, we often go for tapas. Not just because they are fast compared to the average seat-down meal, but also because the tapas sharing concept allows you to sample many more dishes than you would if everyone order for themselves (although if sharing isn’t your thing, tapas can also be ordered in a non-sharing way!).