Welcome to Barcelona, a city known for its vibrant nightlife and excellent bar scene. Whether you’re a local or a tourist, exploring the city’s drinking establishments is a must-do activity. In this guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the top bars, popular drinks, and local customs that make Barcelona’s drinking culture unique. Let’s dive in!
1. Traditional Spanish Drinks
Before we explore the bars, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with traditional Spanish drinks that you’ll encounter in Barcelona.
Sangria is a classic Spanish drink made with red wine, chopped fruits, and a sweetener like sugar or honey. It’s a refreshing and fruity cocktail that’s perfect for warm Barcelona evenings. Enjoy it in a traditional pitcher with friends or order a glass at a local bar.
Cava is Spain’s answer to Champagne. It’s a sparkling wine made predominantly in Catalonia, the region where Barcelona is located. Raise a glass of cava to celebrate special occasions or simply enjoy it as an aperitif. Its crisp and bubbly nature makes it a popular choice among locals and visitors alike.
2. Iconic Bars in Barcelona
Now that you know about the popular drinks, it’s time to discover some of the iconic bars in Barcelona.
Bar Marsella is a legendary absinthe bar that has been serving locals and artists since 1820. Step into this atmospheric bar and experience the timeless charm of sipping absinthe in the same spot where Hemingway and Picasso once sat. Don’t miss the chance to embrace history while enjoying this strong and anise-flavored spirit.
If you’re looking for a traditional and lively tapas bar with a wide selection of cava, then El Xampanyet is the place to be. This bustling bar, located in the heart of the city, offers an authentic Catalan experience. Sip on cava, indulge in delicious tapas, and immerse yourself in the local ambiance.
3. Drinking Etiquette and Customs
While enjoying Barcelona’s drinking scene, it’s important to be aware of local customs and etiquette.
The Art of Tapas
In many Barcelona bars, it’s customary to serve tapas alongside drinks. Tapas are small plates of food that vary from simple olives and cheese to more elaborate dishes. Embrace this local tradition and don’t be surprised when your drink comes with a tasty snack.
Cheers Like a Local
When raising your glass, say “Salut” (pronounced sah-loot), which is the Catalan equivalent of “Cheers.” Embrace the local language and impress the locals with your knowledge of this simple yet meaningful word.
4. Cocktail Culture
If you’re a cocktail enthusiast, Barcelona won’t disappoint you. The city is home to numerous cocktail bars that specialize in creating innovative and delicious concoctions.
Hiding behind a refrigerator door in a pastrami bar, Paradiso is a speakeasy-style cocktail bar that offers a unique and unforgettable experience. From classic cocktails to creative inventions, the skilled mixologists at Paradiso will take you on a flavorful journey.
Located within the luxurious Mandarin Oriental hotel, Banker’s Bar is a sophisticated venue for cocktail lovers. Step into this elegant space and let the talented bartenders guide you through an exceptional cocktail menu. Don’t miss their signature drinks inspired by famous bankers throughout history.
Barcelona is a city where drinking is not just an activity, but a cherished part of the culture. Whether you prefer traditional Spanish drinks, want to embrace local customs, or indulge in expertly crafted cocktails, Barcelona’s bars offer something for every taste. Explore the vibrant bar scene, raise a glass, and immerse yourself in the lively spirit of this incredible city.
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