Barcelona: The Land of Tapas
In America I was never enthralled with the tapas craze. Truth be told, I was never quite sure what tapas were, but I knew people I didn’t like (pretentious Orange County-ers) who talked about them as if they were a fad. Because of this I grew to dislike them, yes its wrong I judged them before I knew what power they held.
In Barcelona, I had the pleasure of encountering my first Catalonian tapas. Once the time arrived to try them, I was eager although I still was not quite sure what they were, I looked for around an hour for the tapas spot Taverna Basca Irati. One thing I liked about this eatery is that the majority of it was stand up which I think is a new and upcoming food trend in Europe at least.
There were a variety of tapas to try from, all lined up with toothpicks stuck in them to hold them together. For payment they went with the honesty system; simply counting how many toothpicks were on your plate when you were done, and charging you for them.
Here is a plate with my favorite tapas of the night (the one furthest from the camera). It was simple, a “tortilla” (omelet) with potatoes, and a lovely sauce on top! The other was also a favorite; a fish cake hugged by a thin layer of zucchini.
There was a lot of variety with the tapas; beautiful presentations and lots of color. Another one of my favorites was the fish with a tangy yellow sauce drizzle, it was visually appealing and oh so delicious.
There were two dessert tapas I had the pleasure of tasting. This was a custard tapas with blackberry glaze. The custard was one of the best I have had, and it was piled high on the crust of bread. The blackberry glaze was perfectly tart like eating a fresh blackberry. It was garnished with some spicy ginger crumble.
The other dessert tapas was the most surprising thing I have ever eaten. I have eaten many strange things, but this one took me completely by surprise. It repulsed and then delighted me. It looked like a tapas topped with praline crème, but when I smelled it, it smelled fishy so my brain and senses told me it was a savory tapas. After I put it in my mouth I knew immediately I was wrong, it was wrong, the world was upside down… but oddly not. The more the fish-dessert was in my mouth the more I liked, it even enjoyed it. I understand a person cannot believe such a dessert could ever be enjoyable, but that’s
even more reason to visit Taverna Basca Irati and see for yourself.
Visit them (if you dare) at
Carrer Cardenal Casañas, 17 08002 Barcelona, Espagne
+34 902 52 05 22
or online at