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Destinations

Barcelona bites: A taste of tapas!

Taste testing the stuffed capsicum and peppers with cured meat at Cervecaria Catalana.
Try some delicious tapas in gorgeous Barcelona and you’ll want to come back for more!
If you’d like an authentic taste of Spain, it’s all about the tapas. Little bite sized delights, eaten at a bar with a glass of wine or an icy cold beer. So when we headed to Barcelona, the first thing we did was head out on the tapas trail.
First stop, Txapela – a kind of sushi train for tapas – you sit down and order from an extensive picture menu of pintxos – little snacks held together with toothpicks. We tried olives and anchovies surrounded by chillies (delish!) and melt-in-the-mouth mini steak sandwiches.
Next we headed to Cervecaria Catalana (Carrer de Mallorca, 236, 08008 Barcelona, +3493 216 0368) a restaurant recommended for its array of brightly coloured tapas in the window, which you choose and have delivered to your table. And there’s a menu filled with mouth-watering delights, such as peppers stuffed with tuna and wafer-thin slices of jamon… You’ll have to queue for a table but it’s worth it.
The line-up was around the block when we arrived but a quick drink at a nearby bar killed some time.
Next up was a place we’d heard about from international chef Anthony Bourdain, in his show No Reservations. Quimet & Quimet (Carrer del Poeta Cabanyes, 25, 08004 Barcelona, +3493 442 3142) is a small bar crammed with shelves of bottles and jars up to the ceiling, and no seats.
You stand at tables or at the bar, and it can get pretty crowded but boy is it worth it if you have adventurous taste! Most of the food served is from tins, but don’t let that put you off – the flavours are extraordinary. Must-try: montaditos (small open sandwiches) made with smoked salmon, yoghurt and truffled honey – out of this world!
But wait there’s more! A quick pit stop at Tapas 24 – renowned chef Carles Abellan’s most inexpensive eatery in Barcelona (Carrer de la Diputacio, 269, 08007 Barcelona, +3493 488 0977) – for a cheese, jamon and truffle toasted “Bikini” sandwich, and we were ready to call it a night.
Where to stay
We stayed at the centrally located Hotel Indigo, which was just minutes away from the bustling main shopping strip Las Ramblas, famous for cafes, bars and people-watching. Boasting the best bed of our European trip – king-sized, good pillows, firm but comforting – and a great bar – it was a welcome place to come home to after a day of eating and shopping.
Hotel Indigo is at Gran Via de las Corts Catalanes, 629, 08010 Barcelona, +3493 602 6690 or www.hotelindigo.com.
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