So, our kid isn’t the pickiest eater, but we wondered how eating in Barcelona would go.
I was starting to get a little nervous because I’d read a few family travel blogs where parents talked about how all their kids ate in Barcelona was Burger King or McDonald’s because “the food wasn’t good.” Not to mention that dinner in Barcelona is usually waaaaaay later than we are used to.
To test things out, before our trip, we went to Boqueria, a tapas restaurant in DC. We ordered some typical tapas that we figured we’d find in Barcelona. Pan con tomate, patatas bravas, shrimp, padron peppers, and some roasted vegetables.
We were pretty impressed that the kid at least tried everything multiple times, even the peppers! So we figured we’d do okay eating at restaurants. *Side note: There are BKs, McD’s, KFCs, etc, etc, etc all over Barcelona, so if your kid (or you) just needs their nuggets and fries fix, you’ll be just fine.*
Our first night in Barcelona, we ate at Bar Boqueria in La Boqueria. It was still early in the evening, and the bar wasn’t crowded, so all three of us sat and watched our food being prepared in the tiny little kitchen. Since #KidGoodwin was okay with the food we’d had in DC, we ordered shrimp, bread, and potatoes. He ate enough that we were pleased.
*Another side note: We totally did what we do back home when we go out to a restaurant and packed little containers of steamed veggies and fresh fruit to go with his meal. Our kid LOVES his veggies! We did this pretty much any time we went out to eat, and none of the servers seemed to have a problem.*
One of our favorite dining experiences was at La Luna in El Born. It looks like a dreamy, candlelit cave and would probably make for a very romantic meal, but we had the kid with us. Nobody seemed to mind, though, and we had steak, shrimp, potatoes, bread, and cheese… and the kid did a great job eating!
The best meal we had, by far, was at La Taberna del Cobre. We had walked past the place a few times on our wanderings through El Born, and on our last night, we decided to grab a table outside. So glad we did! We ordered sangria and a cheese plate to start – fantastic! For dinner, the kid wanted steak, but we decided to order the steak and chicken and just split everything. The dishes came with fries and peppers, so we ended up with a ton of food! The steak was delicious, and I have no idea what they did to the chicken, but the gravy/drippings were so good. If there had been bread, I would’ve soaked it all up!
Jacob was pretty familiar with the neighborhood, so he remembered that there was a fancy popsicle place just down the street. We ordered another pitcher of sangria and took him to get a popsicle. We lingered at the table awhile, listening to music and and savoring our last night in Barcelona. I talked Jacob into going and picking out a pair of earrings for me so I could take home a souvenir. He was so excited by the idea and I now have the memory of him running across the square, beaming, with his purchase – and I got some sweet bling which I now love to show off!
Being close to the mall was very convenient because there were so many options for dinner. We got panini once and grabbed empanadas for lunch twice. One night, after we had been running around all day and just wanted something fast for dinner, we grabbed a couple slices of pizza and some beer. We had tapas one evening at Andreu and got a really great dinner at Bovinum – we sat at the butcher bar and got the steak for two which was enormous – plenty for the three of us!
But one of the biggest benefits to home exchanging is that you don’t have to go out to eat for every meal if you don’t want to. We had breakfast at home every morning and we bought stuff to make PB&Js for lunch. A few days for lunch we had bread, cheese, and jamon. One night, we grabbed a pre-made pasta dish from the grocery store and had that for dinner.
Rather than going out to eat later, we mostly stuck to our own schedule for meals, and we only had a problem once. It was our own fault. Our home exchange partners recommended the restaurant right next to our building, so we decided to give it a try one night. We walked by at different times of the day and it always seemed to be kind of busy, especially in the early afternoon. We checked the menu that was posted by the door and it even said they were open all day. So, we went down there early, around 6:30 or so, thinking that we’d be able to get dinner there. We ordered drinks and asked to see a menu and the server kindly told us that the kitchen didn’t open until 8 p.m. WHOOPS!
Other than that, we had no problem dining in Barcelona with a kid. Unless your kid is the pickiest of picky eaters, you shouldn’t either. But there are plenty of gelaterias and popsicle places to bribe them with, just in case!