Barcelona with Qatar Airways - Wine and Dine - Alvinology

Barcelona with Qatar Airways – Wine and Dine

Iberico ham, served at El Principal restaurant
Iberico ham, served at El Principal restaurant

I can get used to the catalonia diet.

During my trip to Barcelona with Qatar Airways earlier this yearI wined and dined at several restaurants in Barcelona. Each meal comes with a variety of tapas for sharing, main courses, desserts and paired wines. Iberico ham, a staple in Spanish cuisines, seems to be present in every meal and may come as a dish on its own or as an accompanying ingredient. By the end of the trip, I grew very fond of Iberico ham – I can have it for breakfast, lunch and dinner, three  meals a day!

The first restaurant we visited on our first night in Barcelona was at El Principal, located in the Eixample, in the heart of the city and near our hotel. These were the dishes we enjoyed:

El Principal
El Principal
A whole leg of iberico ham
A whole leg of iberico ham
Slicing on the spot
Slicing on the spot
Freshly sliced iberico ham
Freshly sliced iberico ham
Tomato bread - a staple
Tomato bread – a staple
Mini cheese sticks
Mini cheese sticks
Potato wedges
Potato wedges
A dip
A dip
Fried calamari
Fried calamari
Fried lady's fingers
Fried lady’s fingers
Mind you, these are just the tapas!
Mind you, these are just the tapas!
My steak main arrived
My steak main arrived
The potato slices and sauce which came with the steak
The potato slices and sauce which came with the steak
Drizzling the sauce onto the steak
Drizzling the sauce onto the steak
Another main dish
Another main dish
Someone else ordered this which looks like SIngapore char kway teow
Someone else ordered this which looks like SIngapore char kway teow
Golden easter egg chocolates at the end of the meal
Golden easter egg chocolates at the end of the meal
Art piece in the restaurant
Art piece in the restaurant

On our second night, we visited La Gavina restaurant which is located by the port of Barcelona, Port Vell, at Plaza Pau Vila. The restaurant has an excellent seaside view, beside a bustling pedestrian street. Food was decent. These were the dishes we tried:

Anchovies with spring onion and tomatoes
Anchovies with spring onion and tomatoes
Acorn-fed pork cured ham
Acorn-fed pork cured ham
Coca bread with tomato
Coca bread with tomato
Carpaccio of tuna with vegetables, ginger and lime vinaigrette
Carpaccio of tuna with vegetables, ginger and lime vinaigrette
Shrimp in tempura batter
Shrimp in tempura batter
Seafood croquettes
Seafood croquettes
Grilled razor clams
Grilled razor clams
Fisherman style mussels
Fisherman style mussels
Noodle paella with baby cuttlefish
Noodle paella with baby cuttlefish
Catalan creme brulee
Catalan creme brulee
Champagnes
Champagnes
View of the port
View of the port
Pedestrian street at Port Vell
Pedestrian street at Port Vell
Barcelona Head at Port Vell, designed by American pop artist Roy Lichtenstein for the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games.
Barcelona Head at Port Vell, designed by American pop artist Roy Lichtenstein for the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games.

On our last night in Barcelona, we wanted to try something less fancy and more casual. Our tour guide brought us to a smaller and homely restaurant located near our hotel where we had our last round of sangria:

We chose this restaurant for our last dinner in Barcelona
We chose this restaurant for our last dinner in Barcelona
Group picture with our guide in the middle before we started pigging ourselves out
Group picture with our guide in the middle before we started pigging ourselves out
The restaurant has two floors. We got a cosy spot just below the staircase.
The restaurant has two floors. We got a cosy spot just below the staircase.
Homemade sangria, which made everyone very happy for the last night
Homemade sangria, which made everyone very happy for the last night
Catalonia brand sparkling water
Catalonia brand sparkling water
Natalie pouring beer for everyone
Natalie pouring beer for everyone
Smoked salmon with cheese
Smoked salmon with cheese
Homemade meatballs. These taste much better than they look.
Homemade meatballs. These taste much better than they look.
Spinach topped with iberico ham
Spinach topped with iberico ham
Asparagus
Asparagus
Some fried veggies
Some fried veggies
Escargots
Escargots
Seafood paella
Seafood paella
Strawberry sherbet with chocolate ice cream
Strawberry sherbet with chocolate ice cream
Fruit jelly with vanilla ice cream
Fruit jelly with vanilla ice cream

Overall, I pretty much enjoying Spanish wine and dine. I like the sharing portions which is similar to how we chinese like to enjoy our food to. Good food is meant to be shared. I find that we usually ended up taking very long dinner of up to at least two to three hours each night. Our guide said this is normal in Spain, to slowly savour the food and enjoy the company. I am not complaining. 🙂

My favourite F&B discovery was actually a little cafe frequented by locals call Granja M. Viader. Their speciality is in hot chocolate and churros. Absolutely lovely and to-die for! The cafe has a very rich and interesting history which you can read more via their official website. 

Granja M. Viader Cardedeu
Granja M. Viader Cardedeu
Inside the cafe
Inside the cafe
Awards and accolades for the cafe
Awards and accolades for the cafe
They sell chocolates too.
They sell chocolates too.
Little figurines standing on the chocolate slabs
Little figurines standing on the chocolate slabs
Ordering counter
Ordering counter
Fresh, warm churros
Fresh, warm churros
The hot chocolate comes with a generous dollop of cream like this
The hot chocolate comes with a generous dollop of cream like this
Stirring the large dollop of cream into the melted chocolate
Stirring the large dollop of cream into the melted chocolate

This will be the last post on my trip to Barcelona with Qatar Airways. If you missed the earlier posts, do check them out. 

To travel to Barcelona from Singapore, do consider flying with Qatar Airways with a stopover at Doha, Qatar at very competitive prices. 

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