Sometimes we want pancakes! Sometimes we want (need) a Bloody Mary on a Sunday! Luckily our guest writer Julie Sheridan has the scoop on where to get excellent brunch in Barcelona
By Julie Sheridan
Spain, in general, has great nightlife. Barcelona and Madrid being big cities offer lots of reasons to stay out until 6am. If you get swept up in Barcelona’s party scene and find yourself hungover, keep these breakfast joints in mind for a slow Sunday recovery.
Marmalade – spread the word
I was going to save the best till last but sod it, let’s dive straight in.
By evening, Marmalade, a former furniture store at the top of the Rambla del Raval, looks like this. Plush leather sofas, classic wooden panelling and an art deco bar with some seriously funky feather uplighters.
Head there mid-morning of a weekend, however, and you’ll catch the place in an altogether different light. Ladies who brunch, out in force.
And not just ladies, either. Marmalade has earned a name for itself as the venue of choice for that hungry hiatus between breakfast and lunch, serving up generously sized portions of hot plates that consistently hit the spot.
On the menu of their aptly named ‘Recovery Brunch’ are salmon eggs benedict, Mexican omelettes with crème fraîche and diced potatoes, the classic British eggs-beans-and-bacon fry-up, piles of pancakes with blueberries and maple syrup, and varieties of hamburgers that will leave you reeling. Plus, with each main dish under 10 euros, the place offers really good value for money.
Best bit: it has an outside terrace, where you can get some fresh air to help the headache.
Downsides: brunch is only served Thursdays to Sundays, leaving you high and dry if you’re hungover on a Tuesday.
Stodge factor: 7 out of 10 (there’s fresh fruit, yoghurt and smoothies for any salubrious souls).
Curative powers: 10 out of 10. The ‘very berry banana smoothie’ is a particular elixir.
Address: Riera Alta 4-6, 08001- Phone: 934 423 966 -Website: www.marmaladebarcelona.com
Milk – down it in one
If you’ve been to Marmalade, the brunch menu at Milk, down in the deep dark Gothic quarter, may look slightly familiar. In fact, they’re identical – the two are sister restaurants, but whereas Marmalade restricts its brunch menu to the second half of the week, at Milk you can wolf down those eggs Florentine every day of the week.
Inside, it’s a cosy, lazy little den of a place, with chintz sofas, chill-out music and a free set of both local and foreign newspapers. Alongside the sizzling brunch menu, Milk’s main courses include burgers with names like ‘The Godfather’, beef fajitas and fish ‘n chips, so there’s plenty of choice when it comes to soaking up that excess alcohol.
Best bit: brunch is served every single day. Hooray.
Downsides: it’s extremely popular, so unless you get there early (which is unlikely when you’re hungover), you may need to wait for a seat. It doesn’t have Wi-Fi, either.
Stodge factor: 8 out of 10 (the main menu has its fair share of comfort food).
Curative powers: 10 out of 10. The comfy surroundings help soften that morning-after fear.
Address: Carrer d’En Gignàs 21, 08002 -Phone: 932 680 922 -Website: www.milkbarcelona.com
Dostrece – retro in the Raval
This quirkily decorated lounge bar in the Raval neighbourhood is known for its somewhat ‘alternative’ atmosphere and live music in the evenings. It’s got in on the brunch act too, serving up its take on the traditionally Anglo-Saxon feast on weekends between 11am and 5pm.
Together with eggs a-plenty and syrup-drenched pankcakes, Dostrece offers some wholesome deviations from your typical brunch fare, such as spinach salad with smoked salmon, avocado and cream cheese, or muesli with soya milk and honey. The energy smoothie (made from yoghurt, fruit and sunflower seeds) is a refreshing way to wash down your mid-morning pick-me-up. Or you could just opt for hair of the dog, of course, and sink a mimosa or two to accompany your French toast.
Best bit: the eclectic clientele offer plenty of opportunities for people watching.
Downsides: if you ask for mayonnaise, they charge you 50 cents extra. Honestly.
Stodge factor: 6 out of 10. Several healthy options are on the menu too.
Curative powers: 8 out of 10. Lots of choice to make sure you get what you’re craving.
Address: Carrer Carme 40, 08001- Phone: 933 017 306 -Website: http://dostrece.net
Julie Sheridan made the move to Barcelona from her native Scotland in Spring 2011, after 10 years living under Scotch mist in Edinburgh. Out of an innate love of making things difficult for herself she deliberately chose a part of Spain where she knew no-one and couldn’t speak the local language. Her blog focuses on the social and cultural differences between Scotland and Spain, Caledonia and Catalonia. Guiri girl in Barca is her site.