Barcelona offers a plethora of great restaurants serving up authentic local cuisine. But sometimes you just want to speak English, converse with other travelers, or have a taste of home. Here are some of the most popular ex-pat hangouts in the city.
Find a Bit of Ireland in Spain
Paddy Flaherty’s is a Spanish chain of Irish pubs. Football games are on the tube, happy hour prices are low and there is a huge selection of beers from around the world on draft and in bottle. Traditional pub food is served along with a hearty Irish breakfast and specialties like Bangers and Mash.
Enjoy Tapas While Speaking Your Native Tongue
If your Spanish isn’t so great and you’re looking for a less-intimidating tapas experience, check out one of the locations of tourist-friendly Taller de Tapas. These bustling tapas restaurants are just as popular with locals as tourists but make ordering easy with a bi-lingual menu and staff. Prices are reasonable, the beer and wine selection is vast, and the tapas are tasty and inventive. Standout dishes include the chorizo braised in Asturian cider and spinach sautéed with pancetta and chickpeas.
Get Your English Pub Culture Fix
The Black Horse Pub is a traditional English pub in the heart of Barcelona. Clientele is a mix of Spanish and English who come in to enjoy a few pints and watch rugby on TV in the cozy atmosphere. Beers from all over the world, with a concentration from England and Ireland, are served, as well as a selection of Irish and Scottish whiskies.
Sip Cocktails at an International Happy Hour
The cozy and romantic Milk, in the Bari Gòtic area of Barcelona, is owned by Irish ex-pats and manned by a multi-national staff. You’ll hear more English than Spanish spoken here and the menu reflects the eclectic international clientele. Spring rolls, hummus and pita, chicken curry and Guinness stew are offered daily, along with a popular Sunday brunch. Happy hour is held every night from 7-9pm – specialty cocktails are just €3.50.
Drink and Dine on a Student’s Budget
Can Paixano may offer the cheapest meal in Barcelona. Before 5pm, bottles of cava start at under €3 each. In order to enjoy one you’ll need to purchase a few of the house’s delicious and filling sandwiches, which will set you back just a few more euros. Of course, this local secret is out amongst economical travelers and the study-abroad set, so just getting through the door can be a challenge. Come early and be prepared to shove your way through the crowd, shout your order to the bartender, and squeeze into a cramped corner. It may be cheap, but this meal still comes with a price – comfort.