Thursday, 27 February 2014

Casa Guinart, La Rambla, Barcelona

A surprisingly authentic tapas bar in the heart of Barcelona's tourist district, Casa Guinart dates from 1899 and is right next to the city's famous Boqueria Market. Sitting at the bar watching the chefs at work, surrounded by appealing morsels, is much more fun than sitting at a table upstairs. The tapas, which start at about four euros, are a mixture of classics and specials, presumably reflecting what the chefs could source from the market next door. Although the portions are fairly modest, the flavours can be excellent. The spicy patatas bravas, served with a large dollop of alioli, is delicious and filling, while the smoked sardines on tomato bread is fresh and delicious. The ham croquettes are very soft and moreish, while the chunky anchovies with olives have plenty of zing. Beer is pricey for Barcelona at about 5 euros for a half litre. Bewarned, the lively staff can get confused with the orders if you are sitting at the bar and you might get someone else's dish. Casa Guinart isn't cheap, but you will eat well. 8/10