Barcelona is full of tourists and many tapas restaurants: where to go for an authentic tapas experience?
La Cova Fumada is your place if you want a true Catalan, local and tapas ambiance.
LOCATION & DESCRIPTION
It isn’t located in the touristy part of Barcelona but in a little street:
Carrer del Baluart, 56 (+34 932 21 40 61).
La Cova Fumada is a very small bar with several seats and the locals fill it up every day within seconds! It is such an unknown place that I was asked by two locals how I found out about this place.. Like if I had walked in on a secret sect meeting!
Because there’s only one room, which includes the bar, dining area and tiny kitchen, you can observe the whole family working at different positions: grandma and two boys are in the kitchen, father is behind the bar and mother and girls are running around waiting on people.
Because it gets so busy the hours are very tight, especially if you want to go for dinner:
Monday – Wednesday: 9-15h30
Thursday – Friday: 9-15h30 and 18h-20h30
I would advise you get there maybe 10minutes before it actually opens for dinners and several minutes before lunch rush-hour times or else you’ll have to fight your way to the very small counter.
FOOD & DRINKS
The food is extremely tasty! (and that’s a lot coming from me: Miss Picky) However do be aware that, in true spanish tradition, there is a lot of olive oil!
They don’t have an impressive amount of varieties like the typical touristy restaurants do but I can guarantee you that the several tapas they have are exquisite.
Their signature tapas is la Bomba: a type of lightly fried patato filled with their aioli (type of garlicy-mayonaise) and a type of spicy sauce in the middle.
Their fried artichokes and octopus are impressive as well! I hadn’t eaten such a fresh and tasty (whole!) octopus for a very long time.
To accompany your food, order the Sangria which they make in front of you!
You’re probably thinking: such a unique place must cost a fortune?! But it’s not any more expensive (if not less!) than the other tapas restaurants. Bear in mind that the locals go here and these aren’t the richest people.
I took my French, picky, used-to-good-food parents there and they fell in love with the place!