Barcelona Restaurants - Great restaurants in Barcelona that don’t cost a fortune
Barcelona may be a big city, but you can still eat out for a considerably cheaper price than in many other European destinations. Below is a list of some of the city’s most reasonably priced restaurants, tapas places and bars, where you can enjoy great food, beautifully presented.
TRENDY TAPAS & CHIC FAST FOOD
Price for two, around 10-20€
Even though you could class La Taquería as a fast food joint, this small Mexican restaurant places itself a cut above the rest with its innovative menu, scrumptious ingredients and cool, contemporary Central American décor. They serve classic Mexican dishes like tacos, quesadillas and refried beans, but the menu also offers items like bisteck, “Aztek” soup and cheese fondues - as well as a photo taken with the La Taquería taco chef!
Address: Passatge de la Font, 5
Tel: (+34) 93 126 13 59
This is an extremely busy locals’ restaurant that serves typical Catalonian tapas and raciones. The menu changes throughout the year, depending on the fresh, local produce available, and the restaurant’s name comes from their house tapas dish, las flautas, which are small sandwich “wraps” that resemble flutes. You won’t find many tourists here, but you may have to wait for a table at peak lunch and dinner times, between 2-4pm, and from 8.30pm onwards. La Flauta also opens for breakfast.
Address: Carrer Aribau, 23
Bacoa is a smallish gourmet burger chain that has become famous for its seasonally changing hamburgers made from locally bought ingredients. The Universitat branch is the chain’s main locale, popular due to its informal vibe, pop art wallpaper, simple wooden tables and above all, truly delicious food served at a reasonable price. Specialities include flame-grilled burgers with local artichokes, and Iberian ham and Manchego cheese San Jacobos fried in Japanese breadcrumbs.
Address: Rda. Universitat, 31
Tel: (+34) 93 250 72 90
Cat Bar is a tiny vegan restaurant-bar… with in-your-face punk rock attitude. The restaurant prides itself on being an “animal loving” establishment; hence the vegan menu and the cat images all over the black walls. The Cat Bar also specialises in beer, so you’ll find imported specialty labels and local draught ales here. Their veggie burger is the most popular dish on the menu. The bar also features varied types of live music through the week. According to their website, you’re welcome to email or call them, but the bar does not take reservations in advance! So you may have to hang out at the bar while waiting for a table, especially at weekends.
Address: Bòria, 17
Do you fancy tapas and a glass of good house red in a truly unique, medieval setting? El Portalón is a Gothic District restaurant; the building has been converted from 15th century stables and has lots of character. This restaurant gets very busy because it is close to the cathedral and other tourist hot spots, but it is well worth the visit if you’re hungry for good tapas, a buzzing atmosphere and cheaper prices.
Address: Carrer Bany Nous 20
The Raval district is the place for trendy bars, fast food and live music. Dos Trece combines all of these elements very successfully, creating a young, happening ambience. Despite Dos Trece being a bar-restaurant, the menu is light, but not limited to snacks: alongside hamburgers you can order salads, rice dishes, pasta, fish and chicken, while listening to musicians performing their own music or well-loved covers.
Address: Carrer Carme 40
Price for two, around 20-40€
Romero is a restaurant owned by a young, Venezuelan chef who prepares Mediterranean dishes with a modern, creative edge (without breaking your bank). The restaurant’s menu includes gluten-free and vegetarian options, and all of the food is simple, natural and really, really fresh. This is an excellent place to go with friends and enjoy good food and conversation in a rustic-chic setting. Book ahead, especially at weekends.
Address: Bailèn, 115
Tel: (+34) 93 457 06 40
This restaurant may not be everybody’s cup of tea, because as the name suggests, Los Toreros is an establishment dedicated to bullfighting – and its specialty is grilled meat. You’ll find the décor pays homage to past and present greats from the world of los toros, whilst the food is filling, tasty and cheap. Los Toreros is also renowned for its friendly staff.
Address: Carrer Xuclà 3-5
The street that Las Fernández is on isn’t the prettiest, but the inside of this restaurant is nothing but cheerful. Simple, brightly lit and colourfully decorated, the Las Fernández restaurant gets its name from the three sisters who own it. Originally from León, they have created a menu with many delicacies and wines from their native province. Venison and gammon are prominently featured, as well as good smoked salmon, and sardines cooked in a lemon marinade. Main courses cost around 12-15€ and it’s a good idea to call and book ahead, because this restaurant only takes reservations for sittings at 9.15pm and 11.20pm.
Address: Carretes, 11
Tel: (+34) 93 443 20 43
Àpat is an excellent contemporary restaurant that serves quality food for those on a smaller budget, in a low-key, minimalist setting. Their menu is described as “contemporary Catalan and Mediterranean” and they do an amazing three-course lunchtime menu for only 14 euros. The dishes are simple, full of flavour and beautifully presented – choose fresh meat or fish, tuck into traditional rice dishes or chickpea stew, and finish off with apple pie.
Address: Aribau, 137
Tel: (+34) 93 439 64 14
Lluís de les Moles
This small restaurant in Barcelona’s Barrio Gótico district only opens for lunch. But its menu is far more varied that the usual “Menu del Día” you would normally get in ordinary Spanish cafeterias, and the interior is an old-style beer hall. Lluís de les Moles serves hearty cuisine - one of their specialties is black sausage and potato pie - as well as good beers and wines.
Address: De les Moles, 25
Tel: (+34) 93 317 58 66
This is a great little Japanese restaurant that opens for lunch and dinner. It serves Japanese tapas as well as main meals, so it’s easy to pick and choose within your budget. Bouzu does not have any sushi on the menu, but you can get soup with dumplings, noodles, tofu dishes, Japanese fried chicken, pies and vegetable rolls – and brown rice. During lunchtime, you can try many different Japanese tapas dishes for 3-7€.
Address: Ronda de Sant Antoni, 26
Tel: (+34) 93 443 32 26
La Dolca Herminia
La Dolca Herminia represents fine Catalan dining in an elegant setting. This is not as cheap as some of the other restaurants on the list, but if you stick to the set menus at around 20€ per person (one drink included) and the inexpensive jugs of house wine, its definitely worth a special visit. The tables are laid with white cloths and the waiting service is very formal, so this is an ideal restaurant for a quiet meal for two – or if you want to impress someone. The restaurant excels in local dishes like fideuá, calamaritos and arroces and the desserts are heavenly, in particular the typical regional sweet, crema catalana. La Dolca Herminia does not accept bookings ahead, so check their opening times on their website and turn up early to get a table.
Address: Carrer Magdalenas, 27