Winter may be the coldest and least exciting season world over except in Catalonia because when winter comes, so do calcots! Calcots are essentially traditional green onions which in Catalonia are more than just onions. They are originally from Valls in Tarragona, which is located to the south of Barcelona. These vegetables are seasonal, often harvested between the months of December to as late as March making them the ideal dish for winter.
Related article: Interesting Catalan traditions
For a region that is known for its rich cuisine, it is interesting that onions would be cherished this much. Other than being delicious, Calcots are a great reason for people to meet up. They are usually cooked over open fire, barbeque style and eating them is in itself an acquired art. Since they are grilled, the outer part is often black and burnt and has to be peeled off. Once this is peeled off, the inner part is then dipped in a special sauce, romesco sauce. The best way to eat them and minimize the mess made is to lift them above your head and lower the calçot into your mouth. Here are some of the best restaurants to eat calcots in Barcelona, the capital of Catalonia
El Jardí de l’Àpat
The restaurant is located off a beaten path close to the famous Parc Güell . It is very popular with families in Barcelona during weekends in the winter. Be sure to call ahead and make a reservation to secure a table!
Address: Carrer d’Albert Llanas, 2
La Masia Can Portell
Typically, Catalans enjoy calcats at festivals called the calcotada which are held publicly at barbecues or at rural Catalan restaurants called masias. La Masia Can Portell is one of these restaurants, located in the Collserola Collserola natural park just outside of Barcelona.
Address: Carretera de Vallvidrera, Km 6
Font Les Planes
Also located in the Collserola woods, this restaurant allows you to rent their grill and barbeque your own calçot onions if you have them. However, they also serve amazing grilled calcots at the restaurant. This restaurant is ideal for families with kids since there is a small playground outside.
Address: BV-1462, Km. 6.5
Try calcots as tapas at Cerveseria Catalana if you only want to try them without having a full meal! This tapas bar usually serves calçot tapas during the season although not regularly, so you would have to ask if they are on the menu.
Address: Carrer de Mallorca, 236
Related article: Contemporary Catalan restaurants
El Mussol is a chain of Catalan restaurants which specializes in traditional Catalan cuisine cooked with authentic Catalan products. What better place to try the famed Catalan calcots?! They have several restaurants across the city.
If you’re in the city, you can still try calcots without having to travel so far outside the centre. This restaurant is ideal for you as it is conveniently tucked in the centre of Barcelona.
Address: Carrer del Pintor Fortuny, 28
*Main Photo by huggy47 via Visual Hunt
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