Call it soul, essence, identity – it’s the little details that make a city what it is. Here are a few random sights and experiences that to me represent Barcelona.
Cafe con leche! This smooth, delicious blend of coffee and milk tastes like nothing else in the world. The ratio of coffee to milk is an indulgent 1:1. The milk is condensed, then scalded. I’ve asked to have it made in other countries and no one seems to be able to reproduce it. It’s a spanish specialty you’ll soon start to crave. Plan on getting addicted to this stuff.
Even underfoot, there is ornamentation and design. Barcelona is a city of art.
This dignified old Spanish couple walks one of Barcelona’s 4 million little dogs
English in business names is hip, and Happy is the thing to be.
Barcelona is a mass of odd juxtapositions, contradictions and surprises. The confluence of church and fun park at Tibidabo is a great example.
Store hours reflect Barcelona’s wise priorities and lifestyle. A two and half hour break comes in the middle of the business day.
“Una clara” and tapas, two of the official foods of Barcelona. Una clara is a blend of beer and Fanta Limon, a refreshingly light drink that’s great in hot weather. The tapas are pickled olives, pearl onions, carrots and mini cucumbers.
Wrought iron gate at Casa Mila is unexpectedly beautiful – a great example of the strange power of Gaudi’s original, captivating designs.
Unusual beauty in an ordinary balcony railing with potted plants.
Most of the housing in the city is in flats, making balconies ubiquitous. They come in every shape and size, and decorated in every way. Some are especially eye-catching.
Won’t find a more eye-popping assortment of fresh seafood than in La Boqueria.
Trencadis is a Catalan word referring to mosaic created from shards of broken tile. Word-o-philes will recognize the word’s similarity to the English truncate. It’s a unique art form of which Parc Guell and the Palau de la Musica Catalana are foremost examples. Some have described it as “the effect of thousands of brightly-colored patterns dancing together under the Mediterranean sun.”
Displays of affection are common, in real life as well as in art
Both tourists and stylish women are plentiful in Barcelona. Here is a two for one.
Barcelona is a multi-lingual city. Note that Catalan is first on this menu board.
Where else but Barcelona would a building like this get built?
Motos are plentiful and noisy. They’re parked on every corner. As many women ride them as men, maybe even more.
Pinchos come on slices of bread and have a toothpick stuck through them. The number of toothpicks at the end of your meal indicates how much you pay. The variety, colors, flavors and artfulness of pinchos are hard to beat. They’re actually basque – don’t tell the Catalunyans how much I love ’em!
Best of Barcelona