Sunday, January 26, 2014

Barcelona Part 3 - Seafood Dining

When going to Barcelona, I never thought that it was a seafood city, despite sitting on the northeast corner of Spain along the Mediterranean ocean.. it's more of a sign of my poor geography in that region. Certainly Spanish tapas was known for it's use of seafood (like calimari), but it didn't really come to mind as strongly as my association of Spanish food with ham and pork

Nonetheless - my European colleagues had booked a seafood dinner for us, in an appropriately-themed nautical restaurant called Botafumeiro. Apparently, the botafumeiro refers to the swaying chalices with smoke that were used in Catholic churches in the olden days, and can be seen in the restaurant's logo on the outside.

The nautical theme in the restaurant could be seen everywhere, from the wood and brass finishings inside the restaurant, to the navy-like white uniforms of the waitstaff. If you looked carefully, you could find the captain's wheel or brass speed indicators used as a lamp base.

Given that this restaurant was "restaurant marisqueria" (seafood restaurant), we had to order their seafood! But first - an appetizer of jamon iberico

Can't start dinner without some ham first

The restaurant's signature plate was a shellfish plate, which was waaay larger than expected, but delicious. Surprisingly, the shellfish tended to be more grilled, similar to a style you'd find in Malaysia/Singapore, instead of the more French style of boiling or lightly cooking in butter. Our plate had nearly everything: crabs, lobster tail, calimaris, huge prawns (actually, more correctly, langoustines, which are like prawns with claws), scallops, mussels. Pretty much if it had a shell, it was on the plate!
Does it have a shell? If yes - it's on this plate.

Since we were there for a conference, this restaurant did pretty good business for corporate clients, as a pharma company had booked this amazing looking library room for their guests. As expected for a place like this, it'll be definitely pricey. I think my colleagues felt a bit embrassed about the size of the bill, especially since we were on our own and not with customers. 

Private "Library Room" dining - don't think any librarian would approve of eating near books

In the end, a nice introduction for Spanish grillled seafood, a break from the typical tapas menu, and a fun night with colleagues.

Restaurant Botafumeiro

Carrer Gran de GrĂ cia, 81