Experiencing all of the flavours your destination has to offer is one of the joys of travelling. It’s one thing to try the local specialities, it’s another to do it the right way! If you want to live the authentic Barcelona experience, it’s not only what to eat, but how.
Breakfasts Are the Most Important Meals of the Day
In Barcelona, lunch doesn’t happen until mid-afternoon, so you’re likely going to be hungry – at least once if you don’t plan ahead. Rather than eating one breakfast, it’s typical to split your meal into light snacks throughout the morning. Try starting the day off with a light meal of toast and fresh fruit. Later in the morning, have a croissant or a few pinchos (small open-faced sandwiches) to hold off the hunger pangs until lunchtime.
Many restaurants don’t open for lunch until 1:30 p.m. and don’t get busy until at least 3:00 p.m. If you’ve been patient enough, now is the time to experience traditional Catalan cuisine. For an authentic lunch, try paella or gambas al ajillo (garlic shrimp) as both are considered too heavy for dinner and you’ll have plenty of time strolling around this gorgeous city to walk it off before it’s time to nosh again.
After spending some time exploring the city, it’s time to reward yourself with a treat. As the midday temperatures rise, join the locals as they seek a little shade on a patio or head into one of the many gastrobars that line the city streets. These are a perfect spot to try a cold beverage while snacking on cured meats, olives and cheeses.
A typical assortment of tapas
Snacking, Part Two
Now that you are an honorary Barcelonan, get ready to enjoy merienda (afternoon snack) around 5 p.m. Have some coffee, or better yet, try a creamy hot chocolate along with churros. La merienda is meant to give you an energy boost to satisfy your cravings until dinner.
Hot chocolate and churros
Late and Light: Dinner
For the locals of Barcelona, a late dinner is the only way to go. Much like the rest of your food journey, it's a light meal, usually enjoyed after 9:00 p.m. To explore the many delicious flavours the city has to offer without overindulging, we recommend you order tapas – small in size, but big on taste. Patatas bravas (fried potatoes with aioli), croquetas (fried croquets) and gazpacho are a perfect way to end your culinary adventure!