Insiders Guide: Where to Eat in Barcelona's Evolving Food Scene

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Where to Eat in Barcelona's Evolving Food Sceneletregale.com
Where to Eat in Barcelona's Evolving Food Sceneletregale.com

In a city that prides itself on greasy tapas, potatoes with ketchup (patatas bravas), and bread smothered in tomato and olive oil plates as household staples, Barcelona is a trailblazer in foodie trends. And, like any major city, us Millennials are changing the way little by little. You're starting to see lots of twists on traditional classics.

After calling Barcelona "home" during the Fall of 2015, I got to try some of the most amazing restaurants. Some places are serving up classic tapas, while others are changing the classic favorites by introducing interesting flavors and different methods of cooking. Here are seven places you need to try in Barcelona.

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Tickets Bar

If there is one place that should be on your list, Ticket's Bar is the one. The Adria brothers, who once owned the famed and now closed El Bulli, opened up Tickets Bar. The dining experience here like no other. It's a combination of Cirque du Solie and Willy Wonka, and probably the closest you'll ever come to tasting El Bulli. The food is out of this world. And, if you can score a reservation here, prepare to have your mind blown.

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Casa Lolea

Everyone knows that Sangria is for tourists in Barcelona. The locals steer clear of this libation. But at Casa Lolea, you'll find locals ordering this fruit- and wine-based drink without hesitation. Pair this with some light tapas and you'll understand the magic of this city.

Bodega 1900

Bodega 1900

If you can't get a reservation at Tickets Bar, head over to its sister restaurant, Bodega 1900. Bodega is closer to your traditional tapas dishes, but with a few different flares, you'd expect from the Adria brothers. The food is beautifully presented, showcasing the art form and pride in each dish.

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La Pepita

The Gracia neighborhood, La Pepita specializes in their pepitas -- an open-faced tartine with certainly un-Catalan toppers like steak, fried eggs, and foie gras or blood sausage with apple. The place is taking traditional tapas and adding its own spin to things. It's no wonder it's hard to get a table here.

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bar mut

Bar Mut

A small yet chic gastro-bar on the border between Eixample and Gracia neighborhoods is Bar Mut. It is a modest and unpretentious place to enjoy small plates and excellent wine. The daily menu focuses on seafood. But with whatever you order, be sure to order a Vermut, the signature Catalan fortified wine.

Bobby Gin
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Bobby Gin's

This trendy Gin bar offers uniquely flavored tapas like shrimps encrusted in a sugary cereal or salmon ceviche. The establishment boasts a "Mad Men"-esque interior in the elegant Gracia neighborhood. Sip on gintonics and nosh on down right amazing bites.

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Origano

Authentic Sicilian dishes and flavors? In Spain? Yes! Because after a while you'll be craving places that are less Spanish and more something else, Origano is your best bet. You'll find dishes that you've probably not heard of with food combinations that you might have never imagined. This is one to add to your list of places to try in Barcelona.

Have you eaten at any of these amazing places? Tag @valeriefidan on your foodie adventures on instagram!

Insiders Guide to Barcelona's Coffee Culture

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Where To Experience The Best Coffee Culture in Barcelona
Where To Experience The Best Coffee Culture in Barcelona

It seems like our extended stay in Barcelona was long ago, though, it's only been less than two months since returning back. I still day dream of the glistening Barcelonetta, wandering the alleyways of our hipster neighborhood of Gràcia, nibbling on Iberian ham and sipping a Flat White or Cafe con Leche at a local cafe.

There is no doubt that Barcelona is rich in culture. This rad city of hip professionals and stylish bohemians get up early and stay out late. A life lived among outdoor cafes fits the bill in this timeless, classic city with its fashionable youth. 

It might come as quite a surprise that this city has only just started its coffee revolution and has slowly found its way on to the coffee culture map. There are many cafes in Barcelona popping up, paving the coffee way--many, reminiscent of those West Coast coffee shops back in my hometown of San Francisco and Portland. Here are eight curated places that should be a must-visit for the most discerning coffee nerd.

nomad coffee
nomad coffee
nomad coffee
nomad coffee

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1. Nømad Coffee

Nømad Coffee is a trailblazer in the growing coffee culture of Barcelona. This coffee shop places a bold emphasis on exceptional quality and roasting techniques. You'll find beans sourced fair-trade from farmers around the globe.

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[columns_row width="half"] [column][/column] [column][/column] [/columns_row] Image Source: Onna Coffee, Facebook / Instagram

2. Onna Coffee

At Onna, they take coffee seriously, and one can see that. You'll find single-origin beans here from faraway places like Costa Rica. A visit here calls for a flat white. And, if you've never had one, Onna is the place for a "first." It' also good to point our that they have great working space for those working remotely. (A double win.)

skye coffee
skye coffee
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skye coffee 2
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skye coffee 3

[columns_row width="half"] [column][/column] [column][/column] [/columns_row] Image Source: Skye Coffee, Facebook / Instagram

3. Skye Coffee

At first glance, Skye Coffee is probably not what you might expect when thinking coffee to-go. This über-hipster, intimate cafe on wheels, housed in a converted 1972 Citroën HY van in the Poblenou neighborhood and serves up a great cup of coffee from local coffee roasters.

Satan's Coffee Corner
Satan's Coffee Corner
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Satan's Coffee Corner 3
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Satan's Coffee Corner 2

[columns_row width="half"] [column][/column] [column][/column] [/columns_row] Image Source: Satan's Coffee Corner / Instagram

4. Satan's Coffee Corner

If you're a young hipster in the city,Satan's Coffee Corner is unpretentious and has a minimalist appearance. Its modern urban decor, tucked away in the Barrio Gótico, has a loyal following. If you go there, just know that they have two rules: No decaf and no Wi-Fi.

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spice cafe barcelona
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SPICE CAFE
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SPICE CAFE 2

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5. Spice Cafe

At Spice Cafe, people don't just flock here for the excellent coffee, but also for the delicious pastries, like the sought-after Carrot cake, and for a flavorful Chai latte.

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animal coffee
ANIMAL COFFEE BAR 2
ANIMAL COFFEE BAR 2
ANIMAL COFFEE BAR
ANIMAL COFFEE BAR

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6. Animal Coffee Bar

Animal Coffee Bar serves up a great cup of AeroPress coffee and other frothy and milk-coffee drinks. One sip and you can instantly taste the quality in the beans, which are sourced from local coffee roasters.

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federalbarcelonagotic
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federal cafe
Ferderal Cafe
Ferderal Cafe

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7. Federal Cafe

Federal Cafe is one of the many coffee shops making their mark in Barcelona. Drink a coffee made with fresh, pure milk in the garden or sit inside with those working remotely on their Macs.

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CaravelleBCN
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Caravelle 2
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Caravelle

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8. Caravelle

Free Wi-Fi, delicious food, quality coffee, friendly service, and a comfortable working space. What more could you want? At Caravelle, they use a La Marzocco machine (the Ferrari of coffee machines) and source their coffee from a small roaster called Right Side.

Did I miss a place that should have made it on the list? Share it with me below!