As much as I adore Spanish food, sometimes patatas bravas, manchego slices and pan amb tomaquet just don’t hit the spot. Luckily, Barcelona’s foodie scene has expanded greatly over the past few years, with more and more non-Spanish/Catalan restaurants popping up. Indeed, you will find several Mexican restaurants all over the city, but if the craving for guacamole and spicy frijoles strikes when you’re counting the pennies, Rosa Negra is the perfect place to go.
Rosa Negra, the sister restaurant of Rosa del Raval, is situated on the bustling Vía Laietana in the Cuitat Vella district, just a 5-minute walk from Plaça de Catalunya. The restaurant is extremely popular with Barcelonians and tourists alike and it’s not hard to see why. As soon as you walk through the doors, you are struck by the vibrant atmosphere, lively Latin American music and vivacious décor. Its style is certainly unique; painted in clashing pinks and blues, with a bright green bar and an eclectic collection of artwork designed by Mexican artist Lorena Zertuche. The large bar area is always buzzing, especially during happy hour and there is additional seating for diners upstairs. Due to its popularity, you may be asked to wait, but you can grab a seat at the bar, sip a cocktail and share a bowl of nachos in the meantime.
A Mexican explosion
Whilst low prices often leave us wondering whether quality will be lacking, this is most definitely not the case with Rosa Negra. The food is prepared by native Mexican chefs using fresh and locally sourced ingredients. The menu offers a variety of Mexican classics including nachos, tacos, quesadillas and burritos, reasonably priced between €6-8 and which I can testify are all mouthwateringly delicious. The guacamole is creamy and zingy with lime and coriander, the marinated meat is juicy and tender and the refried beans rich and spicy. Need I go on? Well, if you decide to visit between 1.30 and 4pm during the week, you can enjoy three courses and a drink for a very humble €9. What’s more, the portion sizes are extremely generous and are sure to leave you satisfied.
Fancy a mojito or two (or three)?
Arguably, what sets Rosa Negra apart from its Mexican competitors is the irresistible drinks deals on offer. You can treat yourself to a freshly made mojito, margarita or glass of sangria for just €3.50 – and they’re not stingy with their alcohol measures either! It’s the ideal spot to meet friends for a few drinks before a night out or for a casual catch up over a cocktail and some tortilla chips without breaking the bank.
If we’re talking value for money, Rosa Negra definitely fits the bill.