I’ve been lucky enough to eat at Noma in Copenhagen this year, indulge in Paris during the spring and most recently enjoy bites to eat around Seattle (I promise to tell you more soon!). Thanks to Josephine, now we all get a little nibble of Barcelona, too. We’d love to hear about your own food inspired adventures – locally or far flung – in the comments below. -Maggie
On assignment in Spain, I was lucky enough to enjoy a brief, but tasty, culinary experience in the Mediterranean city of Barcelona. The locals there lead an enviable lifestyle: by day, they work diligently and by night, they eat, drink and socialize until the early morning hours.
The city possesses an indescribable air of romance that is both addictive and alluring to visitors like me. The various eateries and restaurants lining the streets lure you in with an enticing aroma that stimulates the senses. Despite visiting for work, I found the time to see the sights and dine at some local eateries and restaurants. On my one Saturday off, I channeled my inner tourist and devoted the day to eating and touring around.
In the morning, I indulged in a cafe solo, otherwise known as an espresso, and made my way from St Gervasi to La Placa Catalunya, where I walked to La Rambla and discovered Mercat de La Boqueria. I handpicked a bunch of fresh globe grapes and a couple of heirloom tomatoes that I ate while strolling the cities streets admiring the sites and wandering into its many shops.
For lunch, I made my way to Carrer Del Grau (beachside) where a friend took me to Santa Marta Barceloneta, a vibrant venue that served decadent Venetian cuisine. The most memorable dish, the Sarde in Saor (Venetian style sardines), consisted of delicately baked sardines smothered with rich caramelized onions and generously scattered raisins, satisfying sweet and savory cravings simultaneously. In addition to the mouth watering appetizer, we indulged in traditional favorites like sicilian olives and fresh bread dipped in olive oil and white wine vinegar. For the main course, I enjoyed an Ensalada de Bonito (Tuna Salad) full of tomatoes, spanish onion, kalamata olives, cos lettuce and topped with a lightly seared Tuna Steak drizzled in a light layer of olive oil.
Spain is renowned for its tapas, so with that in mind I headed to a local restaurant walking distance from the popular sight La Sagrada Familia. The underground venue had tomatoes piled on the host’s bench with preserved meat hanging from the roof alongside large, aged wine barrels. Quite a welcome! The dark and intimate location offered a selective menu of traditional Spanish dishes. My favorite, and the most simple dish, was fresh baked artisan bread smothered in the ‘guts’ of fresh tomatoes. I also indulged in marinated grilled vegetables, spanish meatballs, crisply baked potatoes coated in melted cheddar, assorted olives and prosciutto.
Noshing on seasonal fruit platters and indulging in (many) glasses of wine were added bonuses to my very full day of culinary treats. I’m home now, but daydreaming of returning to Spain. Have you been?
Eat Boutique is an award-winning shop and story-driven recipe site created by Maggie Battista–shop girl, writer, author, and creative business coach. After hosting pop-up markets for 25,000+ guests, Maggie is working to open her first permanent Eat Boutique–a food-retail concept space with a new way to the very best food–as well as coaching women in food to reach life and business goals. Her second cookbook, A New Way to Food: 100 Recipes to Encourage a Healthy Relationship with Food, Nourish Your Beautiful Body, and Celebrate Real Wellness for Life, will be published by Roost Books on February 5, 2019.