What a waste! 5 years in Barcelona without having discovered this restaurant and it’s a true gem; a real find in a city where food is like a religion.
The principal of La Paradeta is simple. It’s all about seafood: fresh, quality seafood caught by the restaurant’s own boat and then displayed as if in a fish market, ready for you to choose exactly what and how much you want to eat.
We were faced with a mass of choices that include several different kinds of prawns (king, Dublin Bay..), lobster, crab, cuttlefish, squid, octopus, oysters, clams, mussels, razorshells, small fry, monkfish etc. It’s a bit like being in La Boquería but without the wait before you can start eating and the great thing is that you really see the quality of what you are buying.
The restaurant itself is of the relaxed café-style that the Spanish and Catalans do so well. You choose your food and drinks, are given a tray with plates and cutlery and a number so you know when your just-cooked food is ready for you to collect from the kitchen. And if you order a lot (guilty), the kitchen won’t send it all at once, giving you time to eat everything while it is still hot.
Having no waiters and owning their own fishing boat means that they are able to cut some of the cost out of the process. So the pricing is very, very reasonable and very fair as you pay by weight. We paid just under 25€ each which included 2 bottles of wine (mid-price), some more expensive choices (oysters and Dublin Bay prawns) and plenty of food to leave us stuffed – a rare feat for a true seafood restaurant with no potato or rice etc. to fill you up.
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It may have taken me 5 years to visit La Paradeta but the same cannot be said of the local population. The place gets busy, and early. People queue because they are well aware that the meal that they are about to have makes it worth the wait. Reservations are allowed only for big groups. The good thing is that the queues move fast, with plenty of tables inside and a buzzing but relaxed atmosphere that wants to make you keep going for the evening rather than slip into a carb-induced food coma.
So I think you get it. I am a total convert to the cult of La Paradeta and if you get a chance to pay a visit, I have no doubt that you will end up as one too.
There are lots of other great restaurants located in this area of the city. For more ideas, take a look at our guide to places to eat in the Born District
Information de La Paradeta:
Address: c/ Comercial, Number 7
Tel: (+34) 93 268 1939
There are 4 restaurants spread across the city with another in Sitges. We went to the one in El Born but you can check out their website for details of the others in Sagrada Familia, Sants and Meridiana.
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