Patio of Gaudi's Casa Batlló, Barcelona
Expats are often drawn to each other in the blogging world or in their city of residence, and not just for the obvious reasons of language or culture in common. In my experience it has been our love and appreciation for our new home that binds us. That was the case with Rob Dobson of Homage to BCN. He is a British expat making his new home in Barcelona, a city which you all know I have a huge love affair with. When he offered to feature my 'Perfect Day in BCN' on his informative memoir to the Catalan capital, I dove right in.
"I write about food, take pictures of food, think about food, turn every conversation into some topic of food, so it comes as no surprise when I’m in Barcelona, one of the food capitals of the world, I chow down. What I love about Catalan cuisine and the food culture of Barcelona is its determination to provide fresh, flavorful combinations to the masses at reasonable prices and with a slice of humility. Sure some have received Michelin stars, or can show off hundreds of press accolades adorned on the wall, but besides this, many continue to do what they set out to do decades ago. Setting an example for new chefs and young talent to follow in role-model fashion. Catalans have a very concrete culinary identity and I think this confidence shines through in their creations, meanwhile the patron walks away with a smile and without having this experience leave a whole in their wallet.
I would start my morning bright and early around 8 or 8:30 with a café con leche and hefty portion of garbanzos con butifarra (in Spanish and called cigrons amb butifarra in Catalan), from Bar Pinotxo in La Boqueria. Juanito is quite a sight and a Barcelona legend - heed my words, do this now! Not to say that he will pass on, but the day that he isn’t loading the espresso machine with coffee grinds will be a sad day for the entire city, and possibly the whole state of Catalunya.
I may meander around the market for a bit because it makes me feel alive, and the early morning smells hang gently over the fog-layer of the Mediterranean capital. I would grab 150 grams of mini fuet from Mas Gourmets for the road, at stalls 305-308..."
To read the rest of the article, head over to Rob's awesome site, Homage to BCN.
Detail of balconies in Barcelona's L'Eixample
View of Carrer d'Aragó n Barcelona Eixample, museum Fundació Antoni Tàpies center
The famous Gaudi street lamps that line Passeig de Gracia