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Everything posted by Saborosa

  1. Thanks Ptipois, but it wasn't that - though it does fit my rather unhelpful description! Thanks for playing!
  2. Thanks Kenneth. I've been doing that and can't find it - can't even find a road that looks right. Perhaps it was all a dream! I wonder if the place has closed down or changed name or decor. It was a long time ago. I knew this was a long shot but thought it worth a go and someone might enjoy the puzzle! I seem to remember it being on a long steepish but quiet road if that helps anyone.
  3. Hi I'm trying to remember the name and location of a regional cuisine restaurant I frequented about 10 years ago in Paris! We were living near Porte de Clignancourt and I remember walking for about 20-30 mins roughly SW - sort of towards Montmartre cemetery or perhaps Guy Moquet metro? The restaurant was a popular workers (office workers) lunch place, and specialised in a regional cuisine (I can't remember which but it was pretty hearty so perhaps SW?!). It was quite deep - you entered with the bar on your left and the room stretched away to the right. It had a long large-windowed, frontage along the road. I have a feeling there was gingham and mirrors. Paper tableclothes. Lots of small ardoises. Lots of wine by the glass (so perhaps it was a wine region). Tables were fairly tightly packed. Service was of that particular professional Paris waiter kind - not unfriendly but definitely businesslike and no time to waste! I think the name may have referenced the region or at least alluded to it somehow! I feel like such an idiot having such dim memories of somewhere I really liked and am desperate to find again. Anyway, if this rings any bells with anyone please please give me any ideas you may have. Thanks a million! Kirsten
  4. I wouldn't worry too much as long as you're vaguely central - Barcelona centre is pretty small and easy to walk around - or use the metro. I generally agree with Daisy17 - somewhere in the Eixample closeish to Pl Catalunya is probably a good bet, with the Born being a good second best. I'd avoid staying in cheaper accommodation in the Barri Gotic or Raval - you need good soundproofing in these areas! Are you thinking hotel or apartment? If self-catering, basing yourself near a good market might be an idea - the Boqueria's the obvious one, but it can be a bit annoying trying to actually shop there (full of tourists!) though plenty of people do. The Santa Caterina market in the St Pere area (above the Born) is another good option - a modern, rather than Modernista building, but still architecturally interesting, and a bit less crowded.
  5. Hi Going to Prague next week with my dad and sister. Can anyone recommend any food and drink tours, tastings or other activities? Thanks in advance! Kirsten
  6. Would echo Quimet i Quimet, Cinc Sentits. For a third, maybe have a tapas crawl along Calle Merce - fried fish at Bodega La Plata (stand at the bar), octopus and pimientos padron at Bar Celta (sit at the bar), and if you're brave and it's open seek out the smallest, narrowest, darkest cider bar and have cured bacon fat and vermouth. For something higher class try Caldeni http://bit.ly/cY1Qt6 or Coure http://bit.ly/bSWPUu.
  7. I love this level of dedication and enthusiasm in a thread. It's quite a narrative. More like this please! Also, can I have your social life?
  8. Hi I'm looking for ideas for an anniversary dinner on a Wednesday evening. Would like somewhere warm and friendly rather than stylish or stuffy, market style cooking but perhaps taken to a higher, more creative level, where well-sourced ingredients are allowed to shine and sometimes there's an odd surprise to freshen the tastebuds. Or just traditional stuff done very well time and again - somewhere reliable. Surroundings that are pleasing to the eye, not too crowded or noisy, with friendly, efficient service. We particularly like fish and seafood (sustainably sourced, even better!), so suggestions leaning that way are welcome. Price isn't so much an issue, but if we do splash out we want to feel like it's been worth it. Previously we've enjoyed Spring, L'Ecailler du Bistrot, Le Baratin, Le Square Trousseau, La Cagouille, Pramil... I'm not saying these necessarily fit my description above, I just mention them to give you an idea of my 'restaurant personality profile' ! We're thinking of Chateaubriand, but I'm worried it may have suffered from the hype and have a 'you must be this cool to eat here' rule. In return, here's a decent formule place if you're ever stuck for lunch near Port Clignancourt (sorry it's not more exciting but we haven't been in town long. Promise to post more soon!): Le Point Bar, 99 rue Championnet (corner Rue Ruisseau) http://www.dixhuitinfo.com/spip.php?article170 (in French) plat 8,50e, 2 courses 10,50e. Simple but well cooked dishes like jarret de boeuf and lentils, starters such as pates and homemade soups. Had a fab apple crumble. Very friendly staff, always with a smile. Thanks all Kirsten
  9. Not everyone wants to eat Asian in Barcelona, but if you're a bit fed up of jamon, there's a great place for dim sum on C/Carders - Mosquito (C/Carders 46, 93 268 7569, www.mosquitotapas.com). It's been through a few different incarnations, and had moved to other premises, but now it's back with a pared-down menu and, thankfully, a less crowded dining room that's been given a bit of a facelift. It's still a casual, friendly place - with casual, friendly service, so go with a little patience! The offering now focuses on dim sum made by expert Chinese ladies, and natural, organic and small production beers, ales and lagers (though there are other drinks on offer too). I've tried the prawn and the pork dumplings; both were light, moist and tasty. And good value - most things on the menu are about 1.50-3 euros. I washed them down with an organic pils, which was very refreshing. If you want something different, such as Vietnamese coffee (only place in BCN serving it) this is the place to go. I also imagine it would be a nice, relaxed place to go as a lone diner. Oh, and the owner - who serves there most nights - is English, for those anglophones worried about communication. For me, this and Wushu are the only places to go in BCN for good quality, well-priced Asian food. But if anyone has other suggestions, let's start a thread!
  10. Even if there isn't, a few of the above can't be more than 20 or 30 minutes by metro or even walking. ← Yes, yes, but what you're forgetting is I'm the laziest person in the world...
  11. I'm looking for a coffee bean purveyor in the 10th or nearabouts. We're on the Canal St Martin near Hotel Du Nord. I've seen recs for Amazone, Verlet and Comptoir Richard, but is there nothing in my neck of the woods? Cheers Kirsten
  12. My favorite place is also Gelateria Caffeteria Italiana! Their fruit flavored ice-creams are especially good: melon, peach, figs, strawberry, etc. Their dark chocolate ice-cream is also declicious. Nothing is too sweet. And everything tastes good and natural. The one sad thing about this place is that the older Italian ladies are no longer there. I have not seen them for months. Now it is just two hot mamacita serving ice-cream. I hope the Italian ladies come back soon. ← That's interesting. I remember at the end of their season last year they had a sign up saying en traspaso, which basically means lease for sale, so I was severely worried and even contemplated taking it over! But I was relieved when I saw the same ladies opening up again this year. The mother was certainly there when I went a while ago - not sure how long ago that was, might have been a couple of months. It's been too cold and wet for ice cream lately! So maybe they've handed over to new owners? But if you haven't noticed any change in the ice cream that's a good sign. I'll try and check it out soon now the sun's reappeared.
  13. Silly! No! Maybe you're a pasta tycoon now , but spare a thought for the poor mileuristas who may want to have the option of both paying the mortgage/rent and treating themselves to jellyfish salad and monkfish liver once in a while... I ate at the front bar from the a la carte menu and, though I did think it was good value considering the market and the competition in BCN, a steal may be going too far (7 euros for one, admittedly delicious, pork rib?). Mind you, it probably seems a lot better VFM in the rear dining room, where you actually get proper seating rather than plastic crates. My grazing partners were more disgruntled by the prices, though I think this was inspired by a combination of extreme hunger and an inability to square the concepts of Asian 'street' food (there are a lot of dumplings) with 'fine dining'. Personally, if I got to the end of the month with just 9,50€ in my pocket, I'd happily spend it on their higado de rape. But if it was 19€... It's not really fusion, I think. The dishes I remember were all Asian. Local ingredients are used, but not as innovations, just local versions of what could also be found in, say, Japan or China. But perhaps there are some fusion-style dishes I missed? By the way, Albert's wife, Tamae, is Japanese - just thought we might want to narrow it down from 'Asian'. Anyway, definitely worth a visit for a couple of dishes and some sake - try the more unusual (for this city) platillos, such as a wonderful kimchi.
  14. Well, they're open and it sure doesn't look like an old school bar. The back room through a bead curtain is minimalist and black - stools around a square island bar where you can have a menu degustacion at 60 euros a head. The front bar (rather a small space) is serving asian inspired tapas from about 4 euros to probably quite a lot more than that. Sorry, I don't have much more info. I was in a bit of a rush and just poked my head round the door. I was a bit disappointed that they only do 2 choices of white and red wine by the glass in the bar. I just wish more places did a greater variety of by-the-glass wine choices. Anyway, I'll try and investigate further soon. But if anyone beats me to it, please report back.
  15. Walked past last night after dinner elsewhere. It was all locked up but from the outside it looks 'finished', but couldn't see inside. I presume if they were 'open' it would have been open. And the website still says 'we're coming', so looks like we'll have to wait a bit longer. It seems to be a bar, rather than a restaurant. I cleverly deduced this from the extra large Scrabble-style letters on the wall above the door spelling BAR. I've read a blog post (of unknown reliability) that suggests it will be an Asian-food version of Inopia - an homage to old-school local bars. I'm not sure how they're going to do this. If the food's not going to be trad, I suppose the decor must be. Will there be an old guy with suspiciously stained trousers playing the fruit machine in the corner? Will the toilets offer a bottle of supermarket shampoo with which to wash your hands?
  16. It's not ringing any bells. But there are a few turron-helado places around the city. Two famous ones are Planelles-Donat at Portal de l'Ángel, 7 just down from Pl Catalunya, planellesdonat.com/eng/index.php and Sirvent on C/Parlament 56 near the Sant Antoni market. Also try their horchata (tiger nut milk drink).
  17. Hi Chrishow Hope you had a great trip. We'd love to hear your report of your experiences. Don't be shy!
  18. My favourite is Gelateria Caffetteria Italiana in Gracia (Pl Revolució 2, 93 210 2339, Open 5pm-1.30am Weds-Sun from Sant Medir (3 March) to Tots Sants (1 November).) Owned and worked by mother-daughter team from Rome. There are almost always queues out the door (most nights they have a ticketing system on the go). 'Natural' ingredients and limited quantities, so it's always made fresh every day. There's a screen in the window showing videos of their ice cream making activities, and you can also now buy DVDs of momma's Italian recipes! Their dark chocolate gelato is superb - supposedly the recipe was invented by great grandfather (I think) for wife when pregnant with one of their 11 or so kids. I also like the stuff by Cremeria Toscana (C/Muntaner 161, 93 539 3825. Open 1pm-12am Tues-Thurs, 1pm-1am Fri, 12pm-1am Sat, 12-10pm Sun, also in the Born near Santa Maria del Mar, opposite the Bubo posh patisserie). Again, Italian owned. (Apparently set up by an Italian couple when the wife couldn't find good ice cream here when she was pregnant and having ice cream cravings). Again, claim to only use 'natural' ingredients, specialising in using seasonal fruits. So the moral seems to be, if you want to find good ice cream in Barcelona follow the trail of a pregnant Italian But there are now loads of chic gelaterias that have opened recently. Another decent one that has branches in Gracia and the Born is Tomo II. And I've heard high praise of the one on C/Llibreteria in Barri Gotic. Just try and avoid anything with waffles, lurid colours and bits of the ingredient stuck on the top (though i think cremeria toscana has started doing this, which has put me off them a bit).
  19. Shutting down on Sunday is pretty general in Spain (and Monday isn't much better). Another perhaps slightly less well known alternative could be Murcia. One of their local delicacies is a meat pie with brain (pastel de carne, though there are brain-free versions), which could be a suitable stag challenge? It also has some good tapas bars and quite a party atmosphere. There are also quite a few activities in the surrounding countryside including watersports in the nearby mar menor. (Just avert your eyes from the vile La Manga strip resort!)
  20. Don't know if this is fit for your purpose but any chef in Spain too up to his/her elbows in reverse spherication to go to the shops might want to browse this site http://www.cocineros.info/mundial/home.php?cat=93
  21. Some friends are going here: http://www.arenalrestaurant.com/index.htm I haven't tried it but a friend of my friends (keep up!) recommended it to them. However, their criteria are more to do with finding somewhere for a largish group, with young kids, and the beach view, rather than amazing food. The Tragaluz Group of restaurants are generally reliable and generally open when other places are closed. www.grupotragaluz.com/ The Taller de Tapas restaurant on Rambla Catalunya 49-51 hasThe an interesting range of platos featuring good traditional dishes. I'm not sure if it will be open but I suspect it will be. The hotel restaurants might be a good bet eg Moo at the Omm, Lasarte at the Condes de Barcelona, Caelis at the Hotel Palace, Drolma at the Majestic, Gaig at the Cram... these are all expensive, high-end places. I imagine most of the local small places will be closed, the markets certainly will be, but wandering around the back streets of the Old Town may lead to a discovery!
  22. The next best thing about Carlos Piernas, after his amazing range of smoked products (which includes rice, potatoes, chocolate and bread as well as lots of fish and seafood) is his full name: Carlos Piernas del Amor!
  23. Hi I've been given some Riso Venere Integrale, Ferron brand, by my local Italian wine merchant. It's apparently the "first european black rice". It seems to take a long time to cook - about 45 minutes boiled. I want to know if anyone's had/used this rice before, and how it is when cooked - what recipes would you suggest using it for? Thanks! Kirsten (Cross-posted in cooking forum)
  24. Sunday's not a good day for tapas hopping as many places are shut. You might be best sticking with Mam i Teca in the evening. For paella lunch on a Sunday I like Casa Valencia, C/Corsega 335, they do good trad Valencian paella. It's one of the 'casas culturales' that are like social clubs for various immigrants from other parts of Spain that are dotted around the city. A table in the front, street-side dining room is the most pleasant. They apparently also have good tango nights! An interesting Barceloneta option is Kaiku, Passeig Joan de Borbó 74, Barceloneta, 93 221 9082. It has tables on a terrace overlooking the beach. Go right to the beach end of Joan de Borbo and turn left. You'll need to book. They do an original paella with smoked rice. Nice desserts too. Oh and in Casa Camper don't forget your room key when hopping between bedroom and sitting room or you'll be clumping down to reception in your oversized camper slippers all night! Not that I'd do anything like that, of course....
  25. Hi Saborosa, do you know if we're likely to taste the suckling pig if we have the tasting menu? I certainly hope so! ← I think it's likely, but anyway, I'm sure you could request it. If you want to be sure, just drop them an email info@cincsentits.com, or call 93 323 94 90. To see pics of their dishes look at http://www.cincsentits.com/en/plats.shtml. Suckling pig is ninth from the left!
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