Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Barcelona - pure joy

Walking through the streets of Barcelona we stumbled upon something very close to heaven - an Enrique Tomas shop - a store with ham and wine. And they had the most amazing thing - ham cones.

A ham cone (a.k.a. chuches de jamon belota) has to be one of THE greatest inventions ever - finally a way to enjoy ham as a snack on-the-go! There are two versions of the ham cone - one with ham cubes and one with shredded, thinly sliced ham. I guess the second one is a better way to go, as the flavour is really intensive and can be overwhelming. Also, this form is better if you want to enjoy how the ham melts in your mouth...

This was one of the best, most inspiring things we saw in Barcelona, one of those things that, like vino turbio, brought us nothing but pure joy.

One cone costs 4,50 EUR, but it's a fair price for such quality and quantity - we took one for the two of us and were completely satisfied.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Barcelona - Can Maño

We went to Barcelona for the Primavera Sound Festival and were lucky enough to team up with people who went there many times before and knew exactly what to do when it came to dining. They took us to the most amazing place at Barceloneta, visited mostly by the locals. To get in there, you have to get in a queue at least half an hour before the opening.

The first amazing thing we got to know there (which stuck with us until the end of the trip and well beyond) was Turbio. This amazing white wine is unlike any wine I've tried before - it's enriched with yeast. Surprising, refreshing and truly delicious, sold in beautifully simple bottles with a thumb-sized label, available from 1,19 EUR in some supermarkets. We brought 10 bottles back to Poland.

Then came the food. I may have already mentioned I'm not really a fan of seafood which is, of course, a specialty of Barcelona, so I was really happy to see that the orgy started with deep fried vegetables - eggplants, sweet peppers and home-made french fries (as seen in the middle of the table). All of it amazing, but nothing comparing to the seafood part.

My mother always explained to me, that seafood tastes completely different when it's really fresh and served just a few hundred meters from where it was caught. As much as I hate to admit it - she was right.

We ordered some sick amount of food, including calamari, sardines and prawns, but my top 2 were chipirones (baby squid, top of the plate) and llangueta - the tiniest fish (just compare their size to the fork), both deep fried.

Everything was amazingly fresh and you had to eat it as soon as it hit the table - while it was still sizzling, crispy and hot. As soon as I got stuffed beyond my limits and had to wait a while to eat more, my satisfaction fell down a few levels - it all wasn't so great as it cooled down. So the way to go there is to take some friends and order really small amounts of everything, but frequently. They don't mind - everything is done extremely fast, like within two minutes from the time you'd placed your order.

If you ever go to Barcelona don't miss this place. It would be a sin.