Las Ramblas Market, Barcelona Spain

One of my favorite things that we got to experience while visiting Barcelona, Spain was walking around the Boqueria Market in Las Ramblas. It was a rainy Saturday and with loosing one full day the day prior thanks to the airlines we weren’t about to sit in our hotel room. Instead, we got golf size umbrellas from our hotel and hit the pavement running. Well, maybe not running. Maybe more of a brisk walk. The front desk at the Hilton Barcelona (which by the way–the hotel was amazing) recommended we visit the Las Ramblas Boqueria market no later than lunch time since it is closed on Sundays. After my husband and I grabbed our hop-on hop-off passes we decided to make our way down to Las Ramblas.

Las Ramblas Market, Barcelona Spain

Since it was raining I opted to leave the DSLR cameras back at the hotel. I was fearful they would get ruined in the rain. So all the photos we took on our first day in Barcelona were taken using our iPhones. Which also meant that all the video I filmed this day was done on the iPhone.

Without further ado… here is my first of 5 Europe travel videos!!!

I hope the video gave you a good idea of how it is at the Las Ramblas Market. As you can tell I am not fluent in Spanish and got yelled at a few times by the locals. Such is life.

Las Ramblas Market, Barcelona Spain

One of my favorite parts of the market was all the fresh juice. We made the mistake by purchasing our first juice upon entering the market and we paid 2.50 in euros. As you saw in the video, once we got into the heart of the market you could find juices for one euro. At the time, our exchange rate was $1.28. You could never get a fresh pressed juice for $1.28 in the United States! So I felt the need to splurge on juices. My husband and I had 4 juices in about an hours time while exploring the market.

Las Ramblas; The Boqueria Market: Barcelona, Spain

La Boqueria Market or Sant Josep is the place to go for any item you need for a delicious Mediterranean meal, or simply for some extra fruits and treats on the go. The Boqueria has everything you could possibly imagine under one tall metal umbrella. Sant Josep market is the largest of Barcelona’s 39 food markets, and it is also the largest in Europe. 

Looking for more information on the Boqueria Market? Head on over to the Suite Life. They have a great post that explains the history of the market as well as more details of what you can find.

If you ever make it to Barcelona, Spain you must not miss the  Boqueria Market! You can shop for souviniers and eat breakfast or lunch while roaming around the market!

The Boqueria Market: Barcelona, Spain 

Address: La Rambla, 89 bis – Plaça de la Boqueria

Phone: 933 182 584 / 933 182 017

Website: www.boqueria.info

Hours of Operation: Monday-Saturday, 8am to 8.30pm

 


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Last week I shared what my breakfast consisted of in Barcelona, Spain while on vacation last month. If you remember from my Airplane Food post, my husband and I had a difficult time getting to Barcelona thanks to a silent pilot’s strike going on.

Night 1: Café & Té

Cafe & Te in Barcelona Spain

On our first night (extremely jet-lagged) we decided to stay close to our hotel. We walked a block or so to the local mall and wondered around. Frustrated and extremely hungry we ended up at Café & Té. Little did we realize that it’s a franchised restaurant that can be found all over Spain! Drinking a very potent glass of sangria might not have been the best for me, but it sure did taste good!

Cafe & Te Pasta Trio

My husband was craving comfort food so he went for the pasta. I warned him it would be nothing like what we eat at home, but he still went with it. He ordered the Pasta Trio that consisted of: Spaghetti Bolognese, Tagliatelle Carbonara and Ricotta Tortellini with Spinach. He liked it but agreed that the flavors were so different!

Cafe & Te in Barcelona Spain

I went with the special of the night. 3 tapas items and a sangria for 12 euros. I choose the potato crusted chicken strips; which at the time when I was reading the menu I thought it read potatoes and chicken–when it came out it was totally not what I had expected. However, I loved the chicken strips! I could have easily eaten another order! My second plate of tapas was a tomato and mozzarella salad. I figured it was a safe choice, and I was right. It was delicious and the mozzarella melted in my mouth! My third choice (which I thought was safe) totally threw me for a curve ball. I ordered a mini burger and let me tell you. It did not taste like a traditional burger! The beef patty tasted more like a pork sausage breakfast patty. I had one bite and gave the rest to my husband. But it was ok, because that meant it gave me a reason to roam around and get dessert!

We found a crepe stand outside of the mall, and I insisted that we split a dulce de leche crepe. It was pure bliss and oh so sweet.

Day 2:

We had a late dinner. We didn’t sit down to eat until almost 9:30 at night. We wandered down dark alley ways through Las Ramblas looking at different menus until we found a place that we were intrigued by. This was the night I wanted to have Paella for dinner.

Colon Mediterranean Kitchen, Barcelona Spain

We found Colon Mediterranean Kitchen. We liked that it was busy and it had an English translated menu! We also were drawn in at the fact that they had a Paella dinner for 2 for 19 euros! Dinner for 2 for $24 American dollars? I’m sold! We got to choose 3 tapas plates to start with. Naturally, because I love olives, I chose the marinated olives. We both were enjoying the Potatoes Bravas (fried potato with a spicy mayonnaise like dipping sauce), and we took a risk and ordered the squid rings (aka calamari in the states). We found it odd that the squid rings didn’t come with a dipping sauce. Thankfully they smothered our Potatoes Bravas with sauce, so we just used that! For our main course we chose the seafood paella chocked full of mussels, clams, crawfish, shrimp, bay scallops, and chunks of lobster. This Paella was massive and could have easily fed four very hungry adults. Sadly, we were only able to eat half of the steaming hot pan they brought to our table.

Coffee Gelato in Barcelona Spain

By the time we were done sipping sangria and beer it was close to midnight. Although I was pretty full, I felt the need to get my gelato fix. So I had my first gelato in Europe. A cafe gelato (coffee). It was so rich and creamy and strong (like coffee)! After I ate it I was afraid I would be up all night from the caffeine! Thankfully, that wasn’t the case.

Day 3:

I’ll share both lunch and dinner on this day. Lunch was just too good to not share.  On our last day in the city, we rode on the hop-on, hop-off bus. We decided to get off at a quaint little part of town to grab a bite to eat. We figured it was where more locals were and a little more off the tourist path. Little did we forget to realize that it was around 3pm and most places close in between lunch and dinner. Oh, and it was Sunday! Since the weather looked like it was getting bad we decided to find a restaurant and take a little break from all the walk we had been doing.

Sangria in Barcelona

I enjoyed a massive glass of sangria. Note to self: I typically don’t drink at lunch time so this made for one tired Katie.

Lunch at Canalla in Barcelona Spain

The menu at Canalla wasn’t large, so we were a bit limited on what to order. I saw that they had barratta and I was sold (even though it was 11 euros). We also ordered the Potatoes Bravas (although this version was our absolute favorite on our trip). We also ordered to meat croquettes, and my husband partook in the special: one extra-large beer and a canape for 4 euro. The beer alone was worth 4 euro and the canape was 3.50. He opted for the jamon and cream cheese canape and enjoyed it. All of our food was great, and the drinks were even better. The back room of the restaurant which is where we were sat was very eclectic. The walls were lined with vintage newspaper. It also made for great people watching. My husband and I enjoyed looking at what everyone else ordered.  2 hours later and we were ready to hit the road again.

Tapa Tapa in Barcelona Spain

Sunday was another late dinner night. Especially since we had lunch at 3pm! We had also been walking all day and my feed were sore and I was exhausted. By the time we finished the Magic Fountain show it was 9:30. I just wanted to eat and go to bed. I was also contemplating just going to bed at that point. But we found a few restaurants nearby. We decided to go with TapaTapa. Once again, little did we realize, we picked a chain restaurant. The inside decor was modern and had eclectic artwork on the walls.

Tapa Tapa in Barcelona Spain

We had a feast this evening. I’m sure that the waitress thought we were pigs! My husband enjoyed a local beer while I sipped on a glass of red sangria. We shared tomato bread, (more) potatoes bravas, tomato mozzarella salad (that had chopped walnuts in it), a grilled vegetable platter, and a shrimp and monkfish skewer (not pictured). My husband also enjoyed a plate of fried potatoes with ham and eggs (pictured middle right). All-in-all our dinner was good.

I’m excited to share my adventures in the Las Ramblas market next week (it’s a video)!

If you want to see more vacation photos from Barcelona, head on over to my DIY blog Sew Woodsy.

 

 


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breakfast in Spain

If there is one meal out of the day we love the most in my household its breakfast. Even when we are traveling and on the go we make time to have breakfast. We stayed in Barcelona, Spain for 3 days/nights before our Mediterranean cruise. Thanks to an abundance of Hilton points we were able to stay in Spain for virtually free. The Hilton offered a buffet breakfast at a very steep price, so my husband and I decided to venture out each day for breakfast. Thankfully, there was a local restaurant right next to our hotel (that came highly recommended to us by family who stayed at the same Hilton). Restaurante Piscolabis Diagonal served delicious breakfast at a very reasonable price!

breakfast in barcelona

They also had English menus. Heck, everywhere in Barcelona had not only English menus but multiple different languages available for a menu. I noticed though, at most places you got one menu for the table. In all the places we dined we also noticed that their were no salt and pepper shakers on the tables. You had to ask for it and it seemed like each restaurant had a very limited number (like 2 or 3). So they would bring it to you and wait for you to salt and pepper your food and then take the shakers from you. Just a tid bit of information in case you ever travel to Spain!

Breakfast in Spain

On our first morning in Barcelona we got up late (for us) and didn’t wander outside of the hotel until close to 11 am. It had been raining and the day before we had been up for over 24 hours so sleeping in was much needed! We started our breakfast with a little cafe (or coffee in English). I ordered my husband a cafe americano which is a shot of espresso followed by a cup of hot water. I ordered a shot of espresso for me. By far, this was one of the best espressos I had on our trip. It was delicious and I could have easily downed 5 shots, but chose not too since I didn’t want to be buzzing around the city! orange juice in spain

Everyone that I talked to told us that we had to try the freshly squeezed orange juice while in Spain. Unfortunately, I can’t drink orange juice, but my husband can. So he gave it a try and loved it. Although, he said it was much more tart than American orange juice. But I reminded him that’s because it is freshly squeezed and no additives are put in the beverage. These machines were in virtually every restaurant we went into (even Starbucks)!

egg white potato omelete

My husband ordered the breakfast special which consisted of fried eggs, bacon, and potatoes (not pictured). Thankfully, our server spoke very good English and understood that I wanted the egg and potato omelet but I wanted it with egg whites only. It doesn’t look too appetizing but it was one of my favorite breakfasts abroad! I also learned about tomato bread. It comes with everything in Spain. I instantly fell in love although my husband, Jon, wasn’t digging it as much. Which meant more tomato bread for me! I later learned that all it is–is a baguette with fresh tomato rubbed on it. I thought they poached it or did something special but one waitress told me it is fresh tomato.

Starbucks in Spain

We woke up early (for Barcelona terms) on our second morning in the city, and made our way out of the hotel by 9am. We were sad to see that Piscolabis was not open yet, so we decided to give Starbucks a try in Spain. We vowed before the trip that we would not eat at any American chains during our time in Europe but it was early on a Sunday morning and not too much was open. Plus, Starbucks had free wifi!!! We both enjoyed locally made croissants (way better than the typical ones you would get in the states) and my husband stuck with his cafe americano while I enjoyed a caramel machiatto and a half hour of free wifi. My husband was happy to read that we were limited to 30 minutes of free wifi since he practically had to peal me out of the store. At that point it had been 3 days with no internet. I was jonesing (and maybe even twitching) for internet!

Breakfast in Barcelona

Thankfully on our last morning in Barcelona, Piscolabis was open for breakfast. However, none of the servers on staff could speak/understand English making it so incredibly difficult for me to order my egg white potato omelet. Let’s face it… we are creatures of habit. We started our breakfast with a cafe americano and espresso followed by croissants. Then ordered an egg breakfast which I know isn’t normal for Europeans or at least in Barcelona. They are content with coffee and croisant. Us piggy Americans have to have a full breakfast!

Breakfast in Barcelona

I knew I was going to have an issue ordering my egg whites from the moment our waiter approached our table. I even tried saying “juevos blanco” which in my mind translated to “white eggs”, but that wasn’t cutting it. Little did I realize I should have learned how to say “egg whites only please” in Spanish. I tried drawing a picture, but apparently my drawing is just as good as my Spanish! ha! So my husband ordered the fried egg special again and I ordered tomato bread. When all else fails I at least know I like that. And of course had an uber carb filled breakfast. My sweet husband, cut some of his egg whites from his fried egg and gave it to me (pictured above, taken from our iPhone).

I hope you enjoyed my breakfast foodie travels in Barcelona!


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