Looking to explore Barcelona’s famous food scene while visiting this artistic and cultural hub by the sea? Here is our foodie guide to where to eat cheap in Barcelona and still have some of the best meals of your life!
In this post, you will find everything you need to know about where to eat cheap in Barcelona, from quaint tapas restaurants to unique seafood bars to cafes, must-try food in Barcelona, and even some tips and tricks on what to eat at what time, how much to tip, authentic Catalunyan dishes, drinks, and much more!
Where To Eat Cheap In Barcelona
Traveling to Barcelona I was ready to be amazed by the unique architecture, the beautiful mix of beaches and mountains, and the eternally perfect sunny weather, and while they all were a highlight of the trip, the absolute winner of my Barcelona experience was the food.
Oh, the food! *sigh*
I spent my five precious days there, walking from North to South, East to West, trying every restaurant and bar I had meticulously pinned on my Google Maps, and along the way, I got talking to friendly waiters and charismatic bartenders who would share even more amazing local gems with me.
This allowed me to curate this impressive list of where to eat cheap in Barcelona—which I’m quite proud of—in the hopes that I will save you the guesswork while on the ground.
I will even tell you about the places that didn’t live up to the hype to save you from the so detestable “insta-fame”, which more often than not, ends up disappointing.
So let’s jump into it, where to eat cheap in Barcelona; the best bars, coffee shops, and the best restaurants in Barcelona, but first, some background information:
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Things to know before visiting Barcelona
Barcelona is Catalunyan
Barcelona is the capital of Catalunya, a region of Spain that is very proud of its roots, so much so, that they have been trying to become independent from Spain for a few years now—but let’s not get into politics— but that’s why you will see the Catalunyan flag hanging everywhere (which is similar to the Puerto Rican flag but with yellow stripes instead of white.)
To play on the safe side of things and not offend anyone is better to refer to things, food, and people in Barcelona as Catalunyan, not Spanish.
Just to be safe.
Spanish food stereotypes to avoid in Barcelona
For this reason is very important to also understand that while Spain has a unique national culture, each of its particular regions has its own identity, and no one is as proud of theirs as Catalunya.
So whenever you are looking for where or what foods to eat in Barcelona, keep in mind that paella is from Valencia, and while you might be able to find it in Barcelona, is only because they are catering to tourists, so I would advise skipping it.
Also, tapas is not a meal, is not a particular dish, tapas just means smaller portions of food being served, which you will find in most restaurants anyway, so for a more unique experience avoid going into any advertised “tapas bar”, every restaurant will serve small dishes in their own way.
What to eat in Barcelona
Barcelona, as you probably already know, is located right on the coast, which means tons and tons of insanely fresh seafood, like, ALL kinds of seafood!
One of their typical breakfast dishes even includes baby squid(!)
Some of them, I will admit, I was not adventurous enough to try, but I did try and loved anchovies—turns out all I needed was pan con tomate to make me fall in love with anchovies, but let’s not get into the details just yet.
So, if you are a seafood lover you will seriously be spoiled for choice with the Barcelona food scene, and if you are not, don’t you worry, there are still plenty of delicious Barcelona foods for you to try.
What time is lunch and dinner in Barcelona?
You might not get to try much of the amazing Barcelona food I was telling you about if you are going to eat at the wrong time.
Trust me, I learned this the hard way *sad face*
Contrary to popular belief, the people in Barcelona don’t close everything down because of the siesta—this tends to be more of a small-town kind of tradition—but instead, they close down because they have designated times for every meal.
Breakfast tends to be between 7-10 am, lunch tends to be from 12-3 pm, with restaurants closing after 3 pm and reopening at 7 pm until 11 pm for dinner.
I would highly advise you to check the Google Maps service hours before going anywhere… but again, don’t trust them blindly, Catalunya seems to beat to its own rhythm, and opening hours are more of a suggestion than a fact, so have a plan B… and maybe C.
Do as I say and not as I do, and make sure to make reservations for dinner because the best places to eat are normally tiny and get packed fast!
I was lucky most of the time and got to places early enough without even meaning to, which allowed me to go in without a reservation, but then again, the meal—lunch at least—is fast-paced, and as soon as you are done eating you are out and the next person goes in, which was perfect by me since I was skipping my way through the city eating at as many places as possible.
Also, I visited in September 2021 when tourism was still not even halfway back to its normal state, so I cannot even imagine how busy the city gets in a normal year.
So book, book, BOOK those dinner spots!
Tipping in Spain
Okay yes, I did emphasize not to call it Spain, but in Catalunya, as in the rest of the country, there is not a big tipping culture, it is accepted, but not expected or required at all, and if you do decide to tip, a simple one euro is more than enough, and some people might argue that’s even a lot!
Choosing where to eat in Barcelona
I did a lot of research before arriving in Barcelona and pinned everything down on my trusty Google Maps—I find this is the best way to keep everything in one place—and normally, I found a lot of my pinned places in Barcelona through food blogs and food tours websites, however, another great way to find a good restaurant while on the ground is to just be attentive to the clientele.
At one point, I passed by a small corner restaurant that was full of construction workers and some older Catalunyan men, and I checked my maps and realized I had already pinned it before, so it just heightened my desire to try that place, so much so that I had to return to it three times to find it open again, but it was so worth it!
Okay, now we are getting into the good stuff, where to eat cheap in Barcelona, the best bars in Barcelona, and all the amazing Catalunyan food you need to try:
Note: I visited Barcelona on August 2021, meaning that opening hours for restaurants and bars were even MORE confusing than the already confusing Spanish opening hours on a normal year, that is why you will see I have a lot of “looked good” options that I was not able to visit myself, some of them were closed when I got there, and some I just couldn’t fit in the day, but I consider they are still worth mentioning.
Where to eat cheap in Barcelona: Coffeeshops & Breakfast
First things first, you will be doing a lot of walking while in sunny Barcelona, so we have to make sure we have the right fuel to start the day.
So here are some ideas of where to have the best breakfast in Barcelona and a good cup of coffee:
Little Fern: Cute brunch spot with a New Zealand touch
I’m guilty of being one of those people who could be in the middle of the desert and would still look for a cute brunch place, and luckily, you will find no shortage of great brunch options in Barcelona, like Little Fern.
Little Fern is a chic yet casual brunch spot, with an airy clean aesthetic, and a modestly sized menu with sweet and savory options inspired by New Zealand’s brunch scene.
At Little Fern, we ordered the avocado smash—because what is brunch without avocado?—the special edition breakfast burger with caramelized onions and grilled cheddar, and for a sweet little something; their delicious warm banana bread, with vanilla mascarpone, raspberry coulis, and nut crumble.
And we accompanied this with fresh orange juice, of course, and two very good cappuccinos—thank you Kiwi influence!
The food was great and the service was amazing! It’s not the most local food experience per se, but it’s a nice place to try for good quality brunch and coffee.
Prices: Avocado smash 10.40€, Special edition burger 7.70€, Cappuccino 2.30€
Old School Bakery & Cafe: Super affordable breakfast in Barcelona
As much as I love my good old brunch, while being in Barcelona I also wanted to experience the local breakfast culture, and after some research, and lots of walking by bakeries and coffee shops, I started noticing a pattern; a lot of cafés—the ones that seemed more local at least—tend to offer some kind of breakfast combos.
At Old School Bakery & Cafe I found this combo of one bikini (hot ham and cheese sandwich), a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice, and a cappuccino for just 4.50€! *insert the mind-blown emoji here*
Super affordable, filling, and an all-around great breakfast option for those days when you just don’t feel like splurging on a 15€ brunch.
I really enjoyed my breakfast at this bakery, but to be honest, you will see this kind of deal on a variety of cafes around the city, so just keep your eyes peeled for something closer to where you are staying, but if you are in the area I also recommend this place.
Price: Combo 4.50€
Santagloria Coffee & Bakery: Casual bakery for a quick breakfast
Santagloria Coffee & Bakery was one of those places I stumbled upon while being ravenous at a very awkward time of day due to having skipped breakfast—learn from my mistakes and never do this, it will just make your travel companion very miserable.
Santagloria Coffee & Bakery is a little bakery chain that offers tasty baked goods (duh), fresh orange juice, massive cups of coffee, and a cheesecake that I didn’t get to try but looked amazing!
During my quick stop here I had a hot jamón ibérico and cheese croissant, and freshly squeezed orange juice, and it was just perfect! Simple, straight to the point, and delicious.
A good place to stop by if you just need a quick bite on the go, and they have different locations throughout the city so you will probably run into one.
Prices: Jamón ibérico and cheese croissant 4.30€, orange juice 2.50€, cappuccino 1.80€
Forn Puiggròs: The best chocolate croissants in Barcelona
I made my way to this bakery after reading in their reviews that quite a few people claimed to have eaten THE best chocolate croissant in the city here, and if that doesn’t draw you right in, I don’t know what will.
Sadly, I didn’t have many chocolate croissants in Barcelona to compare them with, but I can assure you, the Puiggròs chocolate croissants are something else!
I accompanied my flaky chocolate croissant with a surprisingly rich cappuccino, which was shocking since I normally find bakery coffee to be nothing but disappointing, but NOT here, the espresso was strong, the milk was silky, and it gave me the kick that I needed to continue my adventures.
Other things worth mentioning about this popular bakery is the fact that there is free wifi and lots of space to sit down, if you go towards the bathrooms you will see that there are even more tables in the back, making it the perfect place to do a bit of work or just take a break from exploring the beautiful hospital “Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau”, which is close by, and enjoy a good coffee.
Prices: Cappuccino 1.50€, chocolate croissant 2.50€ (estimate)
Onia Café: Cozy Scandi-chic cafe
Onia Café was a happy surprise I stumbled upon while looking for a restroom, and both the coffee and the restroom didn’t disappoint.
Let me explain, the restrooms were actually the prettiest restrooms I have seen in Barcelona, covered in baby pink tiles and gold metal details, with the nicest smelling hand soap (with exfoliating beads!) I ever used at a coffee shop, which was from a line called “Perluo” which you can also buy at the coffee shop.
Besides the cute restrooms and lovely toiletries, the place has a really cozy Scandi-chic vibe, with fluffy cushions on benches and modern lighting fixtures, small tables, and free wifi.
The coffee was excellent, the size generous, and the service warm. They also offer sweet small treats such as alfajores, brownies, and cookies. A great place to stop by for a coffee if you are in the area.
Price: Cappuccino 2.40€
Nomad Coffee: Specialty coffee in El Raval
Nomad Coffee is a straightforward specialty coffee shop; small, simple, good coffee, funky tiles.
I just jumped in quick for a midday cappuccino, had my coffee, and was on my way, nothing extraordinary or memorable, just a nice coffee place.
Price: Cappuccino 2.50€
Spai Joliu: Insta-trap
And now time for a non-recommendation, and a little rant.
Have you ever seen one particular coffee shop or brunch place ALL over Instagram and thought to yourself “wow, it must be so good if all these people can’t stop posting about it”? And then you make your way there and realize this place is just an “instagrammable” place and nothing else?
Yeah? Well, Spai Joliu is the definition of that.
I really like the Instagrammers that posted about this place, I love their photos, but the only worthy element of this place is just that; the photos you can take. Their menu consists of like 4 things, the avocado on toast was WAY past basic, just boring, I got a dirty chai on the rocks which was just bland, the banana bread was dry as can be, and the service was just pretentious and unfriendly.
So nope, would not recommend one bit. If you want to go take the cute picture do it but save your appetite for another place.
Price: Cappucino 2.30€, dirty chai 5€, avocado on toast 7.20 €
Honorary spots to try next time in Barcelona:
- Forn la Cantonada: Bakery offering an extensive variety of sweet treats, their wide selection of croissant flavors caught my eye, but was sadly closed when I passed by. | Address: Carrer del Dos de Maig, 314, 08025 Barcelona, España
- Hidden Coffee Roasters: A friend that lived in the city for the past 3 months recommended this place to me, but I somehow didn’t make it there. Don’t make the same mistake! | Address: Carrer dels Canvis Vells, 10, 08003 Barcelona, España
Where to eat cheap in Barcelona: Best restaurants in Barcelona for lunch & dinner
When traveling and exploring a new city I feel like lunchtime tends to get lost between jumping from attraction to attraction, or it consists of something small and cheap on the go—which I do a lot of times—but the one thing I particularly loved about Barcelona is just how casual meals can be.
This means that you can just stop somewhere by the bar to enjoy a tortilla de patatas for lunch and be on your way soon after, with no need for formalities or waiting for service to the table. So basically, any place can be a good lunch or dinner place depending on how much time you have.
So here are some of my favorite options for where to eat cheap in Barcelona for lunch and dinner:
Lluritu: Best restaurant in Gracia for seafood lovers
Lluritu calls itself a marisqueria desenfada, a no-frills seafood joint, and I could not describe it better, but don’t be fooled.
The place is not the textbook definition of casual, with its white marble bar and tables, it offers a sense of elegance while remaining one of the best places to eat cheap in Barcelona, with customers going in and out, having a few oysters and a glass of cava and then jumping off to the next place.
Lluritu offers two locations, both in the Gracia neighborhood, Lluritu 2 is way bigger than the original, so if you forgot to make a reservation you have a better chance to find a table here.
We first arrived at Lluritu Original and I had my heart set on oysters, but they sadly ran out, so they sent me to Lluritu 2 where I happily feasted on five salty (but not too salty) massive oysters and anchovies accompanied with the staple crunchy pan con tomate (bread with tomato), and we washed it all down with a bubbly glass of cava (the regional sparkling wine), and to top it all off I tried their galleta Maria pudding (a vanilla-flavored cookie), and OH MY, it was di-vine!
I would recommend anyone to get on a plane to Barcelona just for that pudding alone!
…and the oysters were a nice touch too.
Prices: Shrimps 4.90€, oysters 3.20€ each, anchovies 4.40€, Cava glass 3.25€
Bar Mendizabal: Where to eat cheap in Barcelona like a local
I had this place pinned on my maps way before I accidentally walked past it in el Raval and noticed how many locals were eating at this lively corner restaurant. Sadly, the day I walked past it I had just eaten and was on my way to meet friends at a bar, but I made the mental note to come back the next day.
And that I did, but it was closed.
So I came back the day after… to no luck. I was SO intrigued that I seriously made my way there with my backpack on the last day, on my way to the airport, because I could not leave without seeing why so many locals loved this place… and luckily it was open.
So I approached the friendly man behind the bar and asked for a delicious tortilla de patatas as my last meal in Barcelona and a glass of vermouth, and I stood at the bar instead of taking a table, to be closer to the action. This allowed me to see for myself why this place is always brimming with locals and foreigners alike.
Bar Mendizabal is a neighborhood staple, a place where locals inevitably run into someone they know, they share a beer standing by the bar or a quick bite before heading back to work. The food is great, the service is warm, and the local vibrant atmosphere attracts anyone who walks past it.
PS: There is a dark chocolate gelato with extra virgin olive oil(!) and sea salt on the dessert menu that sounded too interesting not to try, and I can confirm, that it is indeed very tasty, and not at all weird, so if you love decadent chocolaty deserts, do give it a try!
Prices: Tortilla de patatas with pan con tomate 5€, Vermouth 2.20€
Croq & Roll Croqueteria: Best restaurant in Gracia for croquetas
If you are wondering where to eat cheap in Barcelona, I would say this is one of the best places for that—cheap and delicious!
Croq & Roll was very high on my list of places I wanted to try while in Barcelona, and my interest peaked after walking past it a couple of times and seeing the place absolutely packed.
The day I visited was no different, the place was bursting with people, thankfully I was alone, which made it much easier to get a place by the bar—so if you come with a group is better to show up earlier in the day or make a reservation.
Croq & Roll is one of the most beloved Gracia restaurants, a super casual joint where the star of the show—as the name suggests—is the famous Spanish croquetas, which you can normally find in many restaurants but not in the variety of unique flavors being offered here. You are seriously spoiled for choice!
Croquetas are quite small and cost between 1.30-1.60€ depending on the kind, so it’s the perfect kind of meal to get out of your comfort zone and try something different, if you don’t like one croqueta is not like the whole meal is ruined.
I had two jamón ibérico—obviously—one shrimp with garlic (langostinos al ajillo) and one goat cheese with caramelized onions and walnuts, and they were all insanely good; crunchy on the outside, and warm, soft, and buttery on the inside. So good I could cry!
A must-visit spot on the search for where to eat cheap in Barcelona, and have an amazing meal.
Prices: 1.30-1.60€ per croqueta
El Xampanyet: Unmissable El Born restaurant and historic bar
Another absolute favorite on my list is El Xampanyet; a small, cozy, and casual bar and beloved eatery where locals eat in Barcelona, with a traditional vibe provided by the stunning tile work that decorates the place and the old school bottles being displayed on the shelves.
This iconic El Born restaurant and bar was funded in 1929 and is still a local favorite up to this day, and is easy to see why; the food is incredible, the service is warm and the cava is delicious, and all for very affordable prices.
This is one of those memorable places that leaves an impression on me for literally checking all the boxes; a popular spot with the locals, a beautiful location that delivers amazing quality food and drinks, and affordable—it’s just perfection!
One of the best places to visit to eat cheap in Barcelona, and one I will visit over and over again whenever I’m in town.
Prices: Cava glass 3€, anchovy stuffed olives 3.80€, warm plates from 5-15€
Quimet & Quimet: Historic bar with sophisticated tapas
Quimet & Quimet is another historic bar and one of the best Barcelona restaurants, similar to El Xampanyet, the place is small but energetic, casual in the service but with a more sophisticated and elaborate menu, and the presentation and quality of the food is just unbelievable!
An unmissable stop on our foodie guide of where to eat cheap in Barcelona.
Warning though, if you don’t like seafood this might be a tough spot for you to enjoy, but if you are a seafood fan then you better come here with a big appetite.
The menu here consists of tapas, small portions of food that you can basically mix and match to form a meal, which is a great way to explore the menu that is full of unique flavors and combinations, you won’t know where to begin!
Here I had some peeled shrimp (langostinos pelados), a montadito of goat cheese and dried tomato, and a very unique take on pan con tomate, all accompanied by a refreshing glass of bubbly cava, of course.
Everything was rich and flavorful, and I would have loved to try half the menu, but this was just the first stop of the night so I had to save some space for the next spot.
Prices: Peeled shrimps 5€, goat cheese montadito 2.50€, pan con tomate 3€
Vai Moana at Playa de Bogatell: Beachside restaurant
This one was quite a happy surprise…
So, one of those good weather days—basically always in Barcelona—I decided to go to the beach last minute, not thinking of my eating hours because…well, who does that?
So after laying under the sun and swimming for a few hours, I realized I was ravenous and I had forgotten to pack a sandwich, so now I was stuck with having to eat something at those beachside restaurants—called chiringuitos in Barcelona—that in my eyes tend to be mediocre and overpriced… or are they?
After looking at their Google Maps photos—as I normally do before eating anywhere—Vai Moana seemed like the best option, and it was! I had the simplest of things; a tortilla de patatas, but it honestly might have been one of the best ones I had on this trip.
Maybe it was the hunger, maybe it was really just that good, but I still dream of that tortilla… however, the one thing I would not recommend to get here was the vermouth, which was actually trash, but the food *chefs kiss*
So, if you are ever in the Bogatel Beach area and also forget to pack lunch, go get the tortilla. You are welcome!
PLUS: They have safe charging stations for your phone. You basically put them in a locker with a key, and when the door is locked it starts charging, and it only costs 1 euro! Win-win! Food and a full battery.
Prices: Tortilla de patatas 5.50€
Mercado de la Boqueria: Barcelona’s most popular food market
This tends to be on every list of best places to eat cheap in Barcelona, and is easy to see why—this iconic Barcelonian market is big, vibrant, and energetic, full of never-ending options; colorful candy, bright fresh juices, glistening jamón ibérico, fresh seafood, and more.
It’s because of all these amazing options that it can get quite overwhelming to actually choose what to eat. The rule of thumb in this kind of place is to stay away from the stalls that are right at the entrance that seem to be tailored for tourists and explore the inside and back of the market where you will find more locals.
The two times that I made it to the market it was almost closing hour, so I didn’t get to see it at its full capacity, but I did enjoy some reasonably priced fresh oysters —but honestly, Lluritu ones were better.
Some of the most popular places at Mercado de la Boqueria include:
- Bar Quiosco Moderno
- Pinotxo Bar
- El Quim de la Boqueria
Price: 3 oysters for 7€
Palosanto: One of the best restaurants in Barcelona
Another very happy surprise we stumbled upon while looking for something to eat at almost 10 pm—yes, we are night owls—was this quaint little restaurant that for some unknown reason was almost completely empty, and I mean unknown reason because honestly, this was one of, if not THE best, meal I had during the whole trip.
We found Palosanto in the heart of El Raval, and I honestly don’t know how I didn’t read about it on any blog before, the place has a homey and casual vibe, with marble tabletops and mismatched chairs, and lots of framed “artwork” on the walls, and I use the term “artwork” lightly since I believe all of the framed art are drawings from customers… this suspicion was fueled by the fact that we got given a notebook to draw on.
This must have been one of the splurgiest meals I had on the trip, and not because it was that expensive, but because it was just that good we couldn’t stop ordering, you will see…
We started with patatas bravas, tortilla de patatas served with a side of pan con tomate, this beautiful burrata with salad and homemade marmalade, and the dreamiest artichokes with alioli and jamón ibérico, and that was the first round.
After devouring all that, we ordered another round of artichokes (the star of the show for me), another round of patatas bravas, flavorful anchovies with even more pan con tomate (a must-eat in Barcelona), calamari rings, and quite a few rounds of their delicious vermouth—which was also a very generous size.
Every bite tasted even better than the one before—the food was unbelievable, the service was attentive and friendly, the location cute and relaxed; truly one of the best places to eat in Barcelona!
So do yourself a favor and add this place to the top of your list!
Prices: Patatas bravas 4.50€, tortilla de patatas 5.50€, sauteed artichokes 7.50€, burrata 9€, vermouth 2.20€
365 Bakery: Affordable option for on-the-go meals
Lastly, 365 Bakery is a Barcelonian chain that offers very affordable options for bites on the go, freshly squeezed orange juice, and coffee.
This was my go-to option whenever I knew I would be out and about all day, like when we went to Park Güell, or when we would go to a beach a bit further out from the city, we would stop by and grab some bocadillos of jamón ibérico to go, some iced teas, and make a picnic.
The sandwiches are good, cheap, and they have locations everywhere in the city so is quite convenient—a good place to keep in mind if you just need a quick meal on the go.
Definitely a great place to keep in mind when looking for where to eat cheap in Barcelona.
Prices: Jamón ibérico baguette sandwich 2.70€
Address: All around the city
Honorary spots to try next time in Barcelona:
- La Xampanerya: Busy traditional bar offering tapas and sandwiches accompanied by delicious sparkling wine. | Address: Carrer de la Reina Cristina, 7, 08003 Barcelona, España
- La Croqueteria: Croquetas bar serving a variety of these delicious handmade pockets of meaty goodness. | Address: Carrer de Blasco de Garay, 59, 08004 Barcelona, España
Bars, vermuterias & cocktails in Barcelona
This official bar list seems incredibly short and sad for someone who loves to find cool bars when traveling, BUT that’s because almost everywhere we ate had its own bar, so we normally had a drink with our meals—something that I very much appreciate about the Catalunyan culture—so most of the places mentioned above could also just be a bar if you wanted to.
But quality over quantity right? And I can assure you these are some of the best bars in Barcelona:
Las Vermudas: A life-changing vermouth bar tucked away in a quiet corner
While doing my research before leaving for Barcelona I kept reading about Vermouth, a herbal liquor made out of wine and a variety of spices, but with a lot of emphasis on it being herbal, which I was not so sure I would like, and for this reason, I am so so so happy that my first vermouth experience was here at Las Vermudas, a Vermuteria, or vermouth bar.
This lively bar is tucked away in a quiet corner of the popular Gracia area, which makes it feel like a little private party, there are groups of friends sitting outside on their patio overlooking a small church, or indoors on high tables by the massive windows and electric green lights, that make playing UNO feel like you are actually in Vegas.
…yes, I bring my UNO everywhere… you never know.
And if the cozy friendly ambiance wasn’t enough reason to go, the vermouth here is seriously the absolute best one I had in Barcelona—and I tried a lot of them!
In the name of science, of course…
Vermouth del Sur was by far my favorite, the el Norte one is also very tasty, but El Sur just seemed more flavorful, not sweeter, just flavorful.
Both vermouths are delicious in their own way, so try them both and let me know what you think—at 2.50€ each you can just create your own vermouth-tasting experience!
We also tried a few things off the menu, nothing really stood out to me except for their olives. I don’t know what they put in those olives, but it could be crack… they were just so unbelievably good! An absolute must-eat in Barcelona!
Prices: Vermouth 2.50€, Las Vermudas olives 2.90€, small chorizos 5.90€, melted cheese with dried tomatoes 6.90€
ELEPHANTA Gin Bar: One of the best gin & tonics of my life
Elephanta was another happy surprise in the Gracia area, after lots of vermouth tasting we were in the mood for a cocktail, and this place came up on maps so we decided to give it a try, and I’m so happy we did.
ELEPHANTA gin bar is a small cozy establishment with just over 5 tables inside, which keeps it very intimate and makes it the perfect place to spend a quality night with a small group of friends enjoying some of the most exquisite gin & tonics you will have in your life.
This adorable bar has amazing service and a super cute menu where the drinks are named after those who had worked at the bar at one point or are founders.
The gin & tonic that I ordered was coincidentally named after the girl who was taking our order that night (Sara) and she was super happy that I chose hers.
The drinks were unbelievable, and also massive, the staff was incredibly welcoming and friendly, and the place was just too cute. I loved everything about the place. So 6/5 would recommend!
Prices: Sara gin & tonic 9€, Violeta gin & tonic 9 € (Both amazing!)
Celler Cal Marino: Casual bodega-style wine bar
Celler Cal Marino is a super laid-back bodega-style wine bar and eatery—at first glance, it looks like a small warehouse, but once you step in you will notice the wine bottles in the back and you will find the Catalan hand-written menu on a big chalkboard on the wall to your right—maybe download offline Google translate for this.
This rustic bar has a cozy and casual ambiance, with exposed brick, wooden beams, and barrels being used as tables. To order you have to decipher the menu on the wall and then go put in your order at the bar to make it easier for the small staff.
The night we were there only one woman was running the whole thing—and it got busy!—but she was always nice and friendly, and the food was tasty and warm when delivered; we ordered cecina-wrapped goat cheese (very strong flavors, I loved it, but is not for everyone) artichokes, croquetas, banderillas with shrimp, and some Vermouth.
The food was good, my favorite was the cecina rolls with goat cheese and the banderilla, the vermouth was “okay” and a bit too small, but the place is a wine bar, not a Vermuteria.
I would recommend this location as a casual place to have a glass of wine and some finger food on the side, but not as a main dinner spot.
Prices: It only exists on their wall, I couldn’t find it online for reference
V de Vermut: Modern vermuteria with a creative cocktail menu
After our “okay” vermouth at Celler Cal Marino, I was left still craving some more vermouth, and this is how we found V de Vermut in the Sant Antoni neighborhood.
V de Vermut is an industrial-chic vermuteria that also doubles as a great cocktail bar, the ambiance is casual and relaxed, the kind of place you would go to on a Friday evening after work to grab a drink with friends and share some finger food.
The vermouth was delicious and generously sized, the olives were tasty, and their outdoor seating area is perfect for a warm evening. Not necessarily a memorable bar for me but a good option to know about if you are in the area.
Prices: Big glass of vermouth 3.50€ , olives 2.50€
Honorary spots to try next time to eat cheap in Barcelona:
- Chatelet: A popular bar in the Gracia area with a great atmosphere, drinks, and snacks. Loved the colorful tile work! | Address: Carrer de Torrijos, 54, 08012 Barcelona, España
- Colmado Gracia: On my last night in Barcelona a local friend I made recommended this place to me because they serve Lustau Vermouth, apparently one of the most delicious Spanish vermouths. | Address: Travessera de Gràcia, 193, 08012 Barcelona, España
- El Cafe del teatro: Another well-loved Gracia bar serving tasty snacks to accompany your drink of choice. Everytime we walked by it it was packed with locals. | Address: Carrer de Torrijos, 41, 08012 Barcelona, España
- Bar Marsella: A beautiful historic bar in Barcelona, funded in 1820, with interiors that will transport you to another era. | Address: Carrer de Sant Pau, 65, 08001 Barcelona, España
- Mariposa Negra: Artisanal cocktail bar serving incredibly creative drinks in a cozy but interesting venue, also was featured on the”28 coolest bars in the world” by Time Out International. | Address: Plaça de les Olles, 4, 08003 Barcelona, España
- Paradiso: Another incredible cocktail bar serving inventive drinks in a in a dimly lit setting. It was featured on the “World’s 50 best bars”. | Address: Carrer de Rera Palau, 4, 08003 Barcelona, España
My absolute musts when in Barcelona:
Las Vermudas: Vermouth and olives were incredible!
Elephanta Gin Bar: Violeta and Sara gin & tonics were some of the best cocktails I ever had.
El Xampanyet: Stunning traditional looking bar & delicious cheap cava.
Croq & Roll: Highly popular spot with mouth-watering varieties of croquetas.
Palosanto: The whole menu is just absolutely delicious!
Hope you found this guide on where to eat cheap in Barcelona useful! Let us know in the comments if you have any other recommendations for our next trip to this incredible city, or if you end up trying any of these places, we would love to hear that!