Barcelona is a great place to find food with the eclectic mix of kitchens from around the world inviting you to try anything from Cebiche to Kow Neow, as well as the fantastic local specialties too numerous to name. The Spanish have an obsession with meat, and Pork in particular (they sell the brains in the supermarket, right alongside the trotters, ears and tails for God’s sake!) and most restaurants will offer you cured hams, roasted of grilled meats or at least have a very meat orientated menu – which is not much fun if you’re a Vegetarian or a Vegan.
I’m going to give you the lowdown on Vegetarian and (mainly) Vegan options if you’re visiting Barcelona. If you don’t know the city well, it’s of pure co-incidence that these restaurants are all fairly close together, considering the size of Barcelona, and the scope it has for restaurants.
First up is Juicy Jones. Juicy Jones has a couple of establishments – both in the old town. The one just off Las Ramblas, on Carrer Cardenal Casañas behind the PC City computer store is more of a Juice Bar, whereas the onelocated on Carrer Hospital is a little bigger. Juicy Jones offers the freshest ingredients for some fantastic concoctions and always a varied menu. Well worth a try.
Just two streets up from Carrer Hospital is Carrer Pintor Fortuny, and this is the location for two of the restaurants on the list. First is Organic, which is on the corner of Xuclá and as the name suggests, serves all organic produce and is very central, just a minute’s walk from Las Ramblas. Organic has another establishment on Carrer Hospital, at Plaça Sant Agusti – just a minute’s walk from Juicy Jones above.
Walk a little further into the Raval neighbourhood, following Pintor Fortuny, and on the opposite side of the road is BioCenter – another great spot for Vegan and Vegetarian munchies. The shop bearing the same name on the opposite side of the road also offers produce and goods if you’re renting a self-catering apartment, for example – along with other main supermarkets like nearby Carrefour and el Corte Inglés at Plaça Catalunya.
Finally we have Sesamo, which is located on Carrer Sant Antoni Abat, at the end, right next to Sant Antoni Market. This is a small, but popular place and serves “comida sin bestias” or “food without beasts”!
One last place worth a mention is “Fresco” which is an all you can eat buffet with various locations around the city centre, and although it’s not strictly Vegetarian/Vegan, there’s a huge salad bar for starters (go back as many times as you like), and there is almost always some vegetarian alternatives, such as pasta with pesto and cheese sauces, etc. I thought it’s worth a mention as it’s very good value for money – and healthy to boot.
David Brydon has been living in Barcelona for 9 years and writes about Apartment for rent Barcelona and regularly contributes to this great Barcelona Guide.