Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Barcelona adventures: Part 1

Way back at the beginning of the year my friends Melanie, Carmen & I decided that it'd been way too long since we'd seen each other & we decided to do something about it. After much discussion via e-mail we decided on Barcelona in April. Not too cold even in spring, plenty to do & loads of vegan food. Could it be the perfect destination? With I start like this I think so...


As soon as we'd dropped our stuff off at the slightly dodgy rented apartment we headed around the corner and across the street to Gopal. I'd heard of Gopal and seen pictures of their food on other blogs but nothing had really prepared me for this awesomeness! The chocolate doughnut is genuinely one of the best things I've ever eaten, it was perfect, the doughnut was cakey, the chocolate all encompassing, and the taste? Spot on.

We ordered a nacho plate to share which came with plenty of melted Cheezly...


...and I ordered a hot Ham & Cheese sandwich. It really was pretty perfect, the bread was delicious and the fillings were plentiful. I can't wait to take Nick here one day too because he would be very impressed with this bap's lack of salad!


This would definitely not be our last visit to Gopal!

The next day before heading out for some sightseeing we grabbed some pastries made by Lujuria Vegana for breakfast.


We were super lucky with the location of our apartment, we knew it was close to Drassanes metro stop and to La Rambla but we hadn't realised that there was a bakery at the end of our street selling vegan treats. Pasteleria La Estrella may look like a normal vegan un-friendly bakery at first glance but the window on the right displays the Lujuria Vegana sign and many vegan treats await inside. Contrary to what Happy Cow has listed this is not an entirely vegan bakery but Pasteleria La Estrella have one cabinet and one fridge full of Lujuria Vegana products. Again, we'd be back, this was a great pastry!


After a trip to Park Güell and many hours spent wondering the streets of the city it was time for food and beer and what better place to get that than Cat Bar!


Cat Bar is an entirely vegan Bar/Restaurant run by a rad British dude who clearly loves cats! Cat Bar has an impressive selection of vegan beers from around the world but I went for the one that came with the set menu. I'm no beer connoisseur!


The menu of the day was a super reasonable €9.50 and came with the beer, a basket of bread...


...and your choice of starter, main, and dessert. There were four options to pick from to start including two soups, two salads or hummus. After the carb fest at Gopal the night before I decided to go for the Mixed Salad so that I could cram in some veg!


This was a simple, tasty, and beautifully dressed salad and I loved the black & white sesame seeds. The mains that day were either Goulash & Dumplings or a Seitan Pesto Moussaka. We all chose the Moussaka!


We definitely made an excellent choice, this was filling without being heavy and the flavours in the dish all went perfectly together. I was fairly dubious about warm lettuce too but this dish won me around!

For dessert I got a piece of this perfectly light, moist, and not too sweet chocolate cake.


It was the perfect end to the meal & I really wish we'd had time to go back to eat another of Cat Bar's amazing daily menu's. Trust me though when I say, I will be back! Barcelona really isn't that far!

I was very excited when I read about Gelaati on Happy Cow. An ice cream parlour with not only vegan sorbet but rice and soya based ice creams too, brilliant. They have one location and it's right in the centre of Barri Gòtic, near the cathedral. I love being able to have an ice cream on holiday, or any time really, and their clear signage made me content that I was in the right place without having to ask too many questions!

On the day of our visit they had Strawberry, Mango, Mojito, Lemon, Banana & Avocado sorbets.
                                 


They also has two rice based ice creams and one soya based option.


I have to be honest and say that I have no idea what the ones on the left or right of that picture were, I feel like the soya option was sesame but I can't be sure. My Spanish is terrible and I'd seen chocolate so I knew that it didn't really matter, I'd already made up my mind! I went for Chocolate & Mojito.


Technically I'm not sure these two options should go together but it worked for me! Melanie went for Chocolate & Banana, which was a winning combination and when we visited again I went with Chocolate & Strawberry which was wonderful.

For out next eating adventure we picked Juicy Jones. Juicy Jones have two locations in Barcelona, they're entirely vegan and they serve up tasty healthy fare alongside a huge range of juices .


I love the way the juice menu's laid out and I picked an Orange, Carrot & Grapefruit juice minus the Cinnamon.


It was a great juice, I'm pretty terrible at finishing drinks and with this one I wished that I'd ordered the large.

As my wisdom tooth was being a complete cretin & making it hard for me to eat I decided to start with something soft & ordered the hummus.


The bread that came to the table went with this perfectly and it was nice and soft for my poor tooth. The only thing I would do differently is to have a few more carrot slivers accompanying the hummus.

Next I went for the Soba Salad.


This was perfect, soba heaped on top of crunchy leaves topped with tofu, avocado, carrot, and bean sprouts, accompanied by a delicious dressing. I would happily eat this salad over and over again, in fact I should really recreate it at home soon given that it contains so many of my favourite things.

Dessert was a little cake with chocolate sauce.


As with the dessert at Cat Bar it was a nice light end to the meal, I often find myself wanting something sweet at the end of dinner, or lunch, but can't handle the idea of a huge dessert so these little cakes are perfect. Again, we enjoyed Juicy Jones so much that we went back more than once but more on that next time...

9 comments:

  1. You went to all of my favourite spots in Barcelona! I wish I could go back there soon. I even wrote an article about the city and its vegan places to eat in the magzine I'm working for!

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  2. That donut looks AMAZING! So does all of the food actually. Looking forward to reading more of your adventures! :)

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  3. wow! I don't think I ate this well when I was in barcelona! it all looks amazing. What a fun city, huh?? xo!

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  4. girl. i was last in barcelona in '90, and all we could find were falafel and indian food. yay!

    although i did get to see gorbachev drive past on the way to the picasso museum.

    xo
    kittee

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  5. So, when are we going to Barcelona?? :0) Dying to go back even more after seeing the pics!

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  6. I have to go to Barcelona if for nothing else, the Cat Bar. It looks amazing. You really have the best travels :)

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  7. I used to go to Barcelona quite a lot but my last visit was about 5 years ago - the vegan options have definitely improved. Such a fantastic city.

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  8. Wow! I had no idea that Barcelona was so vegan friendly :-) Thanks for sharing all of those magical places! All of your food choices look so tasty!

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  9. Yum! I almost forgot how good the food was.

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