One of my favorite parts of travel is experiencing all of the local food and beverages. Barcelona boasts beautiful architecture and unique sights and sounds but is also a wonderful destination for foodies. From Mediterranean influences to native seafood, you won’t go hungry in this Spanish city!
International travel allows people to appreciate other cultures of the world, and a big part of any civilization is the cuisine. The food of a region reflects their history and their geographical location, as well as the resources that they have available to them. The fare that travelers will find in Barcelona reflects the diverse history of Barcelona and its’ centralized location (in relation to northern Africa and all of the Mediterranean).
Here are some of the great foods (and a couple of drinks) that all foodies should try:
Let’s kick this list off with a couple of delectable drinks that anyone traveling to Barcelona will need to try.
Sangria- Everyone knows that you have to try a great glass of Sangria. This is a perfect refreshment on a hot day. The great thing about Sangria is that every restaurant and Sangria maker has a different take on it. Some spots will even offer up to 6 different Sangrias on their menu.
Cava- This is the sparkling wine of Spain. It usually is on the sweeter side, but there is a variation. Brut Cava is drier, and it tastes more like traditional champagne.
There are a couple of meats that are traditional to Spain, and travelers will definitely want to sample some if not all!
Iberico Ham- Iberico ham is to Spain what prosciutto is to Italy. This ham is known well to world-class chefs as one of the world’s best. Iberico ham can be served as is or as an ingredient in a recipe. It is cut thicker than prosciutto, so it is not as delicate and a little meatier.
Chorizo- Chorizo is a popular, spicy sausage that is eaten in many different ways, including sliced like salami or ground and used as an ingredient in many dishes.
Manchego – This sheep’s milk cheese pairs pefectly with Iberico ham. It has a salty, earthy flavor to it, and it originated in the La Mancha region of Spain (hence the name).
Dishes And Other Fare
Gazpacho- This is a chilled tomato soup that is incredibly satisfying on a hot Spanish summer day. It sometimes comes served with Pa amb tomàquet or with sides of croutons, red peppers, and onion. There really is no wrong way to enjoy Gazpacho!
Bocadillos- This is the Spaniards version of a sandwich. Bocadillos are made on baguettes that are crusty on the outside and soft on the inside. Pick a variety of meat then add multiple sauces and toppings that can include lentils, lettuce, corn, or cucumbers to make a perfect Bocadillo.
Seafood- Barcelona is located right on the Balearic Sea and just a stone’s throw from the Mediterranean. This makes Barcelona a central place for fantastic seafood. One of the popular plates to try is the calamari and squid, which you can get either fried or grilled.
Bombas- Bombas are a combination of mashed potatoes and meat rolled in bread crumbs in the shape of a ball and fried. (Not sure you can travel to Barcelona and not try these!) They usually come in two different sizes (snack and meal size), and they are usually served with an aioli on top and another on the bottom.
Spanish Omelet- Not your breakfast omelet. This dish is eaten all day and is available in an individual size or larger size served in slices. Chefs fill these spanish omelets with loads of potatoes and onions and serve with some type of aioli.
Pa Amb Tomaquet- Similar to bruschetta, this is a bread that is served with many dishes in Barcelona. It’s just a slice of bread topped with a bit of olive oil and tomato and a dash of salt. Everyone puts their own twist on the dish. Some will toast the bread, and others will serve it with more tomato chunks.
Croquettas- Croquettas are similar to Bombas. Spaniards fill these long oval-shaped delicacies with meat (usually chicken or Iberico ham) and cheese.
Spain can be a food lover’s dream. Some fantastic restaurants and cafes line the streets, and all of the best Spanish food and drink is at your fingertips.
They love to serve their food in the small-plate style, so the portions are generous for eating all day long. One thing to be aware of is that there will be different serving size options. A pintxos serving is a portion that is like a two-bite snack, and that is perfect for on the go. Several people can share dishes from a tapas sized menu.
No matter what you pick, as long as you sample a little bit of everything, you will enjoy your stay in Barcelona!