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7 Tasty Barcelona Food Experiences

Barcelona cuisine is amazing! Discover seven essential Barcelona food experiences you shouldn’t miss when you visit the exciting Catalan city.

Spanish Jamon - How to Enjoy Barcelona Cuisine n a Weekend

What would you do if you had the opportunity to visit Barcelona for just two days?

This happened to us when we only had a couple days free between our planned visits to Girona and Helsinki. Though we strongly prefer slow travel, we made an exception for Catalan’s jewel city – we just couldn’t say no to a weekend trip to Barcelona, Spain.

Seriously, only crazy people would pass on the chance to visit one of the best food cities of the world, even for a short time. We’re a lot of things but we’re not crazy!

With some advance planning and not a lot of sleep, we managed to pack in a ton of food fun even though we just had two days in Barcelona during this particular trip

What’s So Special About Barcelona?

Barcelona is a city that takes its food and wine seriously. Locals regularly plan their days around food and why shouldn’t they.

These lucky Spaniards live in a city where the food is as exciting as the architecture. Or is the architecture as exciting as the food?

Either way, we can all agree that Barcelona has an awesome food scene to go with its Gaudi buildings. And it’s not just the residents who benefit from the abundance of Mediterranean seafood and Catalan wine.

With some savvy planning, visitors can experience some of the best Barcelona cuisine in just a few days.

How To Enjoy Barcelona Food In A Weekend

We recommend that food travelers spend at least a week in Barcelona to enjoy the city’s wonderful cuisine at a leisurely pace as well as the numerous Barcelona attractions. Sometimes, however, we all have limited time. Don’t despair.

Here are seven food activities to do in a hectic but fun Barcelona weekend.

1. Experience A Ham And Wine Tasting

Ham and Wine in Barcelona Spain
We tasted all of this ham and wine during the Barcelona Ham and Wine Tasting Experience.

There’s only one problem with the ham in Barcelona – it’s addictive.

Whether it’s jamón serrano or jamón ibérico, Spanish ham melts in the mouth and leaves a deliciously salty aftertaste. It’s easy to find ham everywhere, especially at cafés, restaurants and stores.

To learn more about Barcelona’s ham, why not participate in a Barcelona Ham & Wine Tasting Experience? We recommend taking this interactive ham tasting which includes lunch and plenty of wine, ham’s perfect partner in crime.

Mireia Rojas - Barcelona Tour Guide
Mireia Rojas, Barcelona Tour Guide and Wine Lover

Based at Barcelona’s new Gastronomic Center, the class provides a virtual tour of Spain that starts with a video and continues with a generous tasting of five wines and six hams. Here you will learn to put all of your senses into the wines and develop your own aromas before indulging in copious amounts of ham and cheese served with wine or beer to wash it down.

2. Eat At A Tapas Bar

Meatballs and Polenta Sticks at Bodega 1900 in Barcelona Spain
Meatballs and Polenta Sticks at Bodega 1900

Eating tapas is one of the best things to do in Barcelona whether you’re a foodie or not.

Barcelona tapas restaurants serve food in a social setting where diners are encouraged to taste lots of items and share plates with their friends. Eat at one of the city’s many local tapas bars like Quimet & Quimet and Lolita Taperia or blow it out at an upscale tapas bar if your budget can handle it.

Barcelona tapas favorites include Patates Bravas and Jamón Ibérico as well as creative dishes like spherified olives, cannelloni and molletes (mini bocadillo-like sandwiches).

Pro Tip
Check out Barcelona Life to learn about common tapas dishes as well as some Barcelona restaurants where you can try them.

3. Dine At A Gastronomic Restaurant

Dessert at City Bar and Restaurant in Barcelona Spain
Barcelona chefs push the culinary boundaries as seen in this dessert served at City Bar and Restaurant.

Barcelona is the epicenter of gastronomic dining, so eating a meal at a high-end restaurant is a must.

We recommend dining at one of Barcelona’s 22 Michelin starred restaurants though there are other Barcelona restaurants like City Bar & Restaurant at Grand Hotel Central that serve beautiful food that challenges all of the senses.

These Barcelona restaurants are pushing culinary boundaries in exciting ways by combining local Catalan ingredients with ultra-modern molecular gastronomy techniques. The results are magical.

Pro Tip
Make reservations in advance to avoid disappointment since Barcelona restaurants tend to book up early.

4. Participate In A Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting inside Mirador de Colon in Barcelona Spain
Marc Enfante pours wine in the tasting room inside Mirador de Colon otherwise known as the Christopher Columbus statue.

The country of Spain produces 69 wine appellations across 17 provinces, with many of the great winemakers not far from Barcelona. These nearby Catalan wineries produce the globally popular Cava sparkling wine as well as other excellent varietals like Tempranillo and Monastrell. We highly recommend participating in a wine tasting to learn more about these wines and more.

For a unique wine tasting experience, go to Mirador de Colom (the Christopher Columbus statue) at the base of La Rambla. Yes, this wine tasting room is inside a statue constructed in 1888!

Wine offerings include affordable choices like Abadal Crianza 2012 and Penedes Cava bottled for two years. Wines are available both for tasting and purchasing. As an extra bonus, you can ride the elevator to the top of the statue for a bird’s-eye view of the Barcelona skyline.

Pro Tip
Don’t worry if you don’t see the entrance to Mirador de Colom at first glance. The tasting room is literally in the basement of the statue, so you need to enter the statue by descending a small stairwell. If we could find it, you can find it too!

5. Take A Food Tour

Patates Braves in Barcelona Spain
This plate of Patates Bravas was one of many plates we devoured during our Devour Barcelona tour.

Barcelona has a lot of food tours, which makes sense for such a culinary city. Although it’s easy to find a Barcelona food tour, it’s important to find a good one or you’ll be wasting your valuable time and money.

We recommend Devour Tours based on our two tour experiences with the company. Devour offers several different Barcelona food tours including an Evening Tapas and Wine Tasting Tour.

Pro Tip
Schedule a food tour soon after your arrival in Barcelona. The tour will help acclimate you to the Barcelona food scene. Plus, you can connect with fellow travelers during the tour.

6. Shop At A Local Market

Candy at a Barcelona Food Market
Barcelona markets are fun places to shop for produce, meats, cheese and even candy.

Barcelona is an ideal city for travelers who like to live like locals.

The city has 39 local markets spread throughout the city, each filled with seasonal produce, meats, cheeses and so much more. Most tourists flock to La Boqueria, the large central market rated by many periodicals as one of the world’s best market.

Although we recommend a stop at Barcelona’s famous market for the experience and photos ops, we also recommend that travelers check out a neighborhood market frequented by locals instead of tourists. We enjoyed our visit to Mercat del Ninot so much that we produced a YouTube video about the experience.

Pro Tip
Consider renting an apartment for your Barcelona visit. Having access to a kitchen will allow you to shop at local markets and prepare wonderful food at home. Not only will you get to experience life like a true local, but you will be able to save some money to splurge at one of the city’s gastronomic Michelin starred restaurants.

7. Drink Cocktails At A Trendy Bar

Jim-Let Fox-Trot Cocktail in Barcelona Spain
The Barcelona cocktail scene is exciting and fun. We couldn’t resist drinking specialty cocktails like this Jim-Let Fox-Trot.

Considering the quality and quantity of Catalan wine, not to mention the wine’s affordability, it’s ironic that cocktails are so popular in Barcelona. Ironic or not, Barcelona is a great city to try cutting-edge cocktails, many crafted with infused gin and unique ingredients.

Brits may have invented the Gin + Tonic, but Barcelona has taken the trendy drink to the next level at cocktail bars like Javier de las Muelas’ Speakeasy at Dry Martini. Be sure to try a specialty cocktail like Speakeasy‘s Jim-Let Fox-Trot made with Bombay Sapphire Gin, Lima Rose’s and Tónica Premium Schweppes.

Pro Tip
Plan to drink your cocktails late in the evening. Many BCN restaurants don’t start serving dinner until 8:00 pm. The cocktails bars are open even later.

Barcelona Planning Checklist

Hungry For More In Barcelona?

Fig Leaf Dish at Cocina Hermanos Torres in Barcelona
Bucket List
Barcelona Food Favorites - Social IMG
Food Favorites
Mussels Moqueca, Prawns, King Crab, Saffron and Coconut Noodles at Cocina Hermanos Torres in Barcelona
About The Authors

About The Authors

Daryl & Mindi Hirsch

Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on the 2foodtrippers website. Since launching the site in 2012, they’ve traveled to over 40 countries in their quest to bring readers their unique taste of the world.


Article Updates
We update our articles regularly. Some updates are major while others are minor link changes and spelling corrections. Let us know if you see anything that needs to be updated in this article.

We self-funded our multiple trips to Barcelona.

We thank Barcelona Turisme for sponsoring some of the experiences featured in this article.

Original Publication Date: February 13, 2017


Tuesday 14th of January 2020

Nice article, I will like to add some advices... I was born in Barcelona and lived there for 42 years, then I moved to China for 5 years and now I’m in USA the last 5 years. My first advice, don’t go on the weekend, if you can choose go from Tuesday to Friday, we love to go out and the weather allows us to go out for dinner the whole year, that makes the city very busy on weekend. Don't reserve tours or tasting experiences, the city is full of experiences by itself, enjoy the city walking and only make reservations if you are really interested in some restaurant. You are going to find amazing food and beer and wine everywhere. Ask the local people, we love to help making the experience of the visitors even better. Ask about the dish of the day, we have our Mediterranean diet but we love the market cuisine, that means that we cook what we found fresh in the market the very same day, dare to try new things, pig feet, snails, calçots, galtes de porc, red prawns from Palamos, we cook almost everything and we mastered our cuisine. Enjoy the city and be careful with pickpockets, unfortunately this is a big problem.

electric griddle recipes

Monday 20th of February 2017

How do you cook these stew meat I want to try out in my house . Do I need to fry in pan or grill. I have seen this food recipes . I want to try Barcelona food.


Saturday 18th of February 2017

Everything about your trip sounds enjoyable. Particularly, the food tour and wine tasting. And though I don't eat ham, you made it sound so amazing. I love tapas style dining too. It seems to encourage socializing among the group.

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Saturday 18th of February 2017

Like many cities, Barcelona has lots of great vegetarian options. We especially love the olives. So no worries if you don't eat ham!

Ayngelina Brogan

Saturday 18th of February 2017

One of my favourite things to do is go on a walking food tour the first day, you're so right it helps you get acquainted with the city and the guide usually has great suggestions.

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Saturday 18th of February 2017

Great minds think (and eat) alike!

Fiona Maclean

Saturday 18th of February 2017

I've never had a problem finding great places to eat in Barcelona. It's more where not to eat - [erhaps just a question of avoiding the tourist trap restaurants along the Ramblas for example. Has Roca Moo lost its star?

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Saturday 18th of February 2017

We just checked and Roca Moo still has one Michelin star. We're not surprised since their food is so beautiful.

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