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August 15th, 2007

savor: Spain/ Barcelona

Mercat de la Boqueria

Tucked just inside the La Boqueria, the cavernous food market halfway down La Rambla, Pinotxo is a small, narrow bar with twelve or so stools. Here you’ll find traditional, seasonal Catalan cuina de mercat (market cooking) at its finest. I like to come for a substantial breakfasts (“with fork and knife” as the Catalans say), and usually order the stewed chickpeas with blood sausage, pine nuts, and raisins. Some days I get the baby squid flash-fried with tiny white beans or, in winter, when a cold wind is blowing through the market, one of their other specialties, cap i pota, a rich stew made from the head and feet of veal. Famous Juanito greets everyone and pours cava and makes cortados while his two nephews – Albert and Jordi – do the cooking. Watching them work is the best education in town.
If you want a stool: around 10:00 or 11:00 a.m. for a late breakfast.
To eat with your fingers: codornices en escabeche, quail marinated in vinegar, oil, and herbs.
Decadent, at least for breakfast: baby squid with small white beans.
Decadent, anytime: najavas, long, narrow razor clams grilled and dashed with olive oil and a bit of sea salt.

Posted by jeffkoehler in  savor: Barcelona  |  

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