A question: who doesn’t want a small piece of bread with something delicious on top?
Meaning ‘thorn’ or ‘spike’ in Spanish, referring to the toothpicks holding the snack together, this Basque staple is best enjoyed with a glass of young white wine or zurito (a quarter pint).
And though it may not be the Basque country, our Catalonian capital has its share of quality pintxo bars. Here’s a list of the best pintxo bars in Barcelona – let’s dig in!
The Best Pintxos in Barcelona
Looking for good prices and huge variety? Head for the famous Carrer Blai.
Between Tapioles and Roser streets there must be about a dozen bars all serving pintxos and beer/wine options starting at just €1.00.
Just get to Paral-lel or Poble Sec metro stations and it’s a short walk.
La Tasqueta de Blai
Area: Poble Sec | Calle Blai 17 | Metro: Paral-lel (L2 + L3) | Website
Another gem hidden in plain sight packed with locals. In my opinion these are the top pintxos in Barcelona. I take visiting friends here. A downside is there’s no terrace, but that’s evened out by the cocktails!
This place is good for night owls as it’s open till 2 am. try the spicy chorizo with quail egg, roasted aubergine with mozzarella, and the mini burgers.
More than 100 varieties of pintxo! The Basque country meets Barcelona here and the offerings are decidedly more refined than tradition calls for. Possibly the best quality-price ratio in central Barcelona.
This place is famous for using top quality ingredients and inventing seasonal varieties. I recommend trying the foie stuffed mushrooms, goat cheese with Iberian ham, and tortilla de patatas.
La Taberna Blai Tonight
Area: Poble Sec | Calle Blai 23-25 | Metro: Paral-lel (L2 + L3) | Website
Value value value. A cozy traditional and oft-packed bar with a terrace for watching the always active Blai. A friendly staff with good English. The high turnover at peak hours means fresh food is coming out constantly.
A huge variety of 30 or more pintxos and €1.00 glasses of beer. Try the salmon and asparagus, chicken curry (yes, you read right), and the classic chistorra (a fast-cure sausage heavy on garlic and paprika).
Irati Taverna Basca
It’s just a stone’s throw away from the famous La Rambla and yet in presentation and taste it’s clear this isn’t some tourist-trap hell. The cold pintxos at the bar featuring smoked salmon, Serrano ham, goat cheese, sardines, stuffed peppers are to die for.
Don’t fill yourself up right away though. As crowds build the attentive waiters bring out the hot stuff on trays and offer them like some fancy party. Try the Rioja wine.
Bodega Biarritz 1881
This rustic and cosy tapas place in the heart of the Barri Gotic has been churning out high quality pintxos since forever. Whether you’re a meat lover or looking for vegetarian options there’s something here for you.
There’s no self-service here and you’re putting your faith in the chef’s hands. Tell them what you like and don’t like and for €27.00 you’ll get two 8 course tapas tasting menus. The spicy chicken, chorizo, and vegetable stack skewers are highlights.
Get there early around 5 pm. Cash only.
Area: Poble Sec | Calle Blai 9 | Metro: Paral-lel (L2 + L3) | Website
Something different. Most pintxos here are served on delicious mini pancakes or in wraps.
The flavours are also more international and the nachos and quesadillas prove this. A trendy and modern bar with unparalleled presentation and a wide assortment of local craft beers.
Try the tuna croquettes, black rice and squid wrap, ricotta spinach and bacon piadina.
El Pintxo del Petritxol
This legendary street famous for churros con chocolate also brings us top notch pintxos in the Barri Gotic – so grab a seat among the rustic exposed brickwork and enjoy a wide variety of both hot and cold tapas.
You’ll love it for its fair prices, cold tap beer, and a sangria.
Golfo de Bizkaia
Ignore the Blockbuster Video-esque logo and tacky maritime decor, this is a classic Barcelona pintxos spot right near the Santa Maria del Mar. Grab the traditional cider here and watch their unique and showy pouring method.
A bit more gourmet than its Blai cousins, the 80 types of ‘pure Basque’ pintxos and central location more than justify the prices. Try the anchovies in vinegar, Iberian ham, fried prawns.
Pintxos in Barcelona
Why You’ll Like Pintxos
- They’re cheap, tasty, and filling.
- There’s fast self-service to give you more time seeing attractions.
- It’s an easy way to try mini versions of Spanish culinary staples.
- The large variety ensures even fussy eaters find something to eat.
How Does it Work?
Sit down and order yourself a drink and a waiter will ask you if you need a plate.
What happens next is a self-service free-for-all where you can load up on tasty wonders that’ll make you hate yourself for eating with your eyes.
Just make sure to keep the toothpicks – they’ll be counted for the final bill.
Not Got Your Pintxo Fix? Get in Touch
As always I’m going to promise my readers that the advice doesn’t stop here! If you’ve got any comments or questions about pintxos in Barcelona or anything else to do with your holiday I am here.
And don’t be afraid to join the pintxos discussion in my new Facebook group called I’m Off to Barcelona – here you can ask any questions, air out grievances, chat with fellow travelers, and more – anything goes!
Happy eating 🙂