Thursday, December 1, 2011

Eating At La Paradeta

About a week ago I went to watch the Castellers with Diana, Bea, Toni, and Lena and afterwards we went to eat at La Paradeta restaurant in the Born area (near the Parc de la Ciutadella).

I'm not sure how many times that I've been there now but I continue to love it every time. After (usually) waiting in a line outside, you stand at a counter where there's fresh seafood on ice. You point at what you want and the guy gathers some up in a piece of paper, shows you how much he's got, and you say "that's great" (well, usually in Spanish) or "more"/"less".

This is an action shot of Diana ordering our lunch with Lena, Toni, and Bea mugging for the camera:

Once you're done ordering your seafood, you move around to the side counter and order your drinks and bread. The specialty drink of the house is a white wine in an unlabeled bottle that's fairly dry, pretty cheap, and (for the money) deeelish. At that point, everything gets paid for, the food gets sent to the kitchen, and you go find an open table.

It's a super casual place. Your receipt has your number on it, which they call as each item you ordered is ready. At a small window that opens into the kitchen, the cook takes your receipt, crosses off that item, gives you back your now greasy receipt, and "serves" your food. Actually, the way they serve the food reminds me a little of when I worked at Nifty Fifties.

We also took my family there when they were visiting Barcelona:

I know that Lena and Toni loved it and my family did too. In both cases, the favorite item was probably the Chanquetes, which are a small (two-inch long) fish that are breaded and fried. (Of course, what breaded and fried thing isn't really good???) On the other hand, the only thing that we ordered that my family wasn't crazy about was the mini octopus sauteed in butter. I think that Diana and I ended up eating the whole pile ourselves...

If you're in Barcelona and you're looking for a really good, not-too-expensive seafood meal that the locals eat, this is definitely it. Of course, if you do go after reading this, you'll need to take me too!

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