Tapas in Barcelona, and Barcelona food in general is an enormous field to investigate. Today we will investigate segment of Barcelona tapas, which are called Pintxos! (Pronounced Pinchos).
Pintxo means ‘spike’ in Spanish and the literal translation serves us well in understanding what these tasty treats are all about. Several savory items are spiked to a slice of bread with a toothpick for your eating pleasure.
If you want to read about some traditional Barcelona tapas places read Matt´s blog Cerveceria Catalana: The best tapas restaurant in Barcelona? or checkout my blog about Tapas in Barcelona for free
“Ir de pintxos!” (To go for Pintxos) is the Basque version of pub crawling. Pintxos originated in the Basque Country. They can be warm or cold, salty or sweet. Traditionally many pintxos come with seafood and goat cheese, but you can find a wide variety with combos such as tortilla de patatas, eggs with tuna, croquets and even little hamburgers as well.
The variety of this Barcelona tapas is never ending and you can find places that serve up to 100 different Pintxos at a time. You basically grab your plate and start loading onto it whatever tickles your fancy; it can be difficult because they normally all look so good that you want to try everything. When you’re completely stuffed and can’t even manage one more tapa the waiter will come by to count the the toothpicks you have on your plate and the most common model is you pay per toothpick leftover.
Because of how they charge, there is usually a standard price on all pinxos, no matter what they may contain. The average price is about 1,60 per Pintxo, but as with anything else, you can find cheaper and definitely more expensive also. It’s quite typical to accompany this Barcelona food with cider or Txakoli which is slightly sparkling white wine. 6 Pintxos, or so, should be perfect for a light, but delightful lunch and “ir de Pintxos” is a nice sociable activity for you and your friends while having a drink and chat in a Basque tavern. We tried some places for you and here are our suggestions. Try one of these 10 best Pintxos bars.
The word “maitea” means love or dear, and love is what we, SuiteLifers, feel for this place. Very friendly service and they offer you more than 100 different kinds of cold and warm Pintxos. The cold ones attract you to the bar and the warm ones are ready in a minute when you order them. Last time when we went to Maitea with my 3 friends we had 21 pintxos, 2 beers, 2 cokes and we payed 41 euros and got a big bottle of cider for free. They have some awesome home made little desserts so try not to fill up too much on tapas (easier said than done!).
Grupo Sagardi has quite a few restaurants in BCN and in Spain and it’s three most notable pinxos restaurants in Barcelona are Irati, Euskal Etxea and Sagardi.
c/Cardenal Casanyes 17
Irati is said by some to be the best Pintxos bar in town. You will find this restaurant with Barcelona tapas near the Boqueria Market on las Ramblas. It´s a friendly little place with around 50 different and splendid pintxos. Another one is…
Plaçeta Montcada 1
80 variations of pintxos at the bar with great atmosphere and a cool interior that you will just love!
Plaça de Pau Vila 3
This bigger restaurant has a long bar with excelent Barcelona tapas that can host around 100 people!
You won´t be dissapointed if you decide to visit any of these three bars above, but the one that I like the best is Euskal Etxea.
Excellent Pintxos for 1,50€ each or the more special ones for 2.20€, and yes they are totally worth a try! Don´t miss this place!
If you don´t mind waiting a bit for really great Barcelona food, than you should come to check out Taktika Berri. It´s one of the best Basque restaurants in town, because the meat and other ingredients are brought in directly from San Sebastian, the epicenter of Basque food.
The name of the restaurant means sea, and you will love the marine white and blue decoration. They offer around 70 different cold and warm pintxos.
c/de la Princesa 11
Have a lunch menu in the heart of Born for 5,50! You´ll get 5 pintxos and a drink. This place is special for another reason as well. The waiter won´t count your toothpicks here at the end of the meal, they just ask, “how many Pintxos did you eat?”. It’s quite a nice touch and makes the customers feel welcome an trusted. I suppose the owner just believes in the quality of his food so much that he assumes if you liked the food you wouldn´t need to play with numbers.
c/Correu Vell 4
Baserri opens at 6:30 p.m. And you can have 5 pintxos and 1 beer for 6 euros.
c/de Blai 23
Enjoy this place on a warm evening at one of their terrace tables and try any of their pintxos for just 1 euro.
You probably have noticed that these restaurants’ names don’t sound too Spanish. It´s because of their Basque origin. Did you know that Basque country has its own language that is supposed to be the oldest in the Europe and so old that linguists aren´t even able to come to an agreement as to its actual roots? Go and check out some of the above taverns and let us know, which Pintxo was your favorite!