Whether you are a self-proclaimed foodie or just enjoy exploring other cultures, a food tour is a must-do in a new country. Here are 5 reasons to take a food tour in Barcelona.
We actually did a couple of food tours in Barcelona. You can read about the first one here. While they were both amazing, the tour I’m referencing today is the one I’d recommend if you are truly food-obsessed.
Okay, if you are even a little bit as much of a food lover as I am, you need to check out the Food Lover’s Company tour in Barcelona. The guides (hi Nuria!), the culinary knowledge, the personal bits of history and secret views of the city – it was unmatched by any other experience.
Regardless of the tour or your level of food-love (or even the city), here are…
5 Reasons to Take a Food Tour in Barcelona
1. Find the Hole-in-the-Walls
The food game in Barcelona is strong, but tourism inevitably means an influx in inauthentic food. We wanted authentic Spanish tapas! Nuria, our guide, delivered on the first stop. We were in Barceloneta, the neighborhood by the sea, and naturally stopped in a little family-owned seafood restaurant.
If you want to experience real authentic food and a local atmosphere, this place is a must. I’m pretty sure we were the only English speaking people in the place, and I am positive I’d have never been able to order on my own!
Nuria had us covered. The food just kept coming out, each dish better than the last! It was a religious experience; even Vegas agrees.
You know its good when Vegas ditches the fried potato to eat squid and suck on a shrimp head!
Her favorite was the butifarra christorra y secas – blood sausage and another cured sausage mixed with white kidney beans.
Side note: I’d only tried blood sausage in Ireland before, where I hated it. We couldn’t stop eating this one!
2. Trying New Things
You will try foods you’d never try on your own. Shrimp head? Check.
(That shrimp brain juice was tasty, btw.)
Fried anchovies? Double check.
The fried anchovies, or “boquerones fritos” weren’t half bad! We didn’t eat their heads though. You have to draw the line somewhere. 😉
For something a little more normal, a dessert called torrija con crema Catalana from Bar del Pla. I liked this better than the Crema Catalana we’d had everywhere.
It’s basically a cinnamon-laced bread pudding that’s fried in olive oil. The ice cream on top is crema Catalana flavored. Decedent AF and slap-yo-mamma good!
Throughout our tour, we were given insight into the history of the city, both past and present. Yes, I could have read a book or the newspaper, but that’s no fun! Having a first-hand account and a local’s perspective as you are wandering the streets of a new city is an amazing experience.
While we ate together and wandered about, Nuria fielded our questions about life in Barcelona. I loved being able to ask questions and understand the current events in Barcelona outside of the news we get in the States.
4. Local Hangouts
Nuria took us to a bar where she goes “vermouthing” with her own friends. While we were there, an entire wedding party walked in. All local. I don’t think I need to describe that scene to you…
Coincidentally, this was also the best vermouth of the trip. We learned that each bar makes their own, and it’s a serious point of pride. Two thumbs up to La Plata.
5. Hidden Gems
We were taken down a small street, along the old Roman walls, and up a very long staircase to the top of a tower to find the best, most hidden view of the city. There is NO way I’d have gotten this view alone!
My favorite hidden gem is un-pictured. We were swooped off the small, cobblestone streets of El Born and into a teeny cheese shop. This shop was run by an extremely passionate, brilliantly hilarious woman, Katherine, who’s originally from Scotland.
The first thing we were told was “NO PICTURES” in the sort of tone you obey without question. We were given wine, 3 scrumptious cheeses, and cheese ICE CREAM in mini cones. All the while, we bantered with Katherine about Texans, bad attitudes, and our shit-show of a president. The conversation was littered with “F” bombs, which are far more amusing in a Scottish accent, so we felt right at home.
If you can find this little shop in El Born, you’ll be in good hands. Just don’t take any pictures. 😉
We made a new friend! It felt like we were hanging out with a girlfriend all day. We ate together, laughed a lot, and had genuine conversations. Food truly brings people together!
Tours with Food Lover Company never exceed 8 people, which I think is goes a long way to forming a connection and making the experience more special. I can’t recommend this tour enough!
I WAS NOT FINANCIALLY COMPENSATED FOR THIS POST. WE RECEIVED A TOUR FOR REVIEW PURPOSES. THIS POST IS COMPLETELY MY OWN, BASED ON MY EXPERIENCE.
Vegas and I are still trying to figure out how to move.
Would you have sucked on the shrimp head?
Are you as food-obsessed as I am? We should hang out. 😉