Barcelona Cuisine

Neighbourhood Cooking at Bar Nuri

Location: Barcelona, Spain

Cuisine: Catalan




Along the main thoroughfare, or rambla, in the neighbourhood of Poblenou in Barcelona is a place that looks fairly casual, but offers the best tapas and plates in the area. A couple, Nuri and Jordi, opened their first restaurant in Poblenou, Bar Núria, in 1962 and it was a neighbourhood tapas bar where people enjoyed playing dominoes. After a few years in Poblenou, Nuri and Jordi wanted to change their business so in 1972 they moved to the Eixample district and opened a new place, where they served grilled food and sandwiches. One of their children eventually opened their own restaurant. On the family’s 60th anniversary of opening the original Bar Núria, they returned to their roots and reopened the bar back in Poblenou. Called Bar Nuri, it’s a neighbourhood restaurant offering what they call ‘local cuisine’ or ‘neighbourhood cooking’. It’s a wonderful concept. Now, let’s get down to the food!

I’m not sure there’s a better way to start a long leisurely lunch than ordering the house vermouth and some gildas. La Gilda is the name of one of the most famous pintxos (small snacks) you can taste in San Sebastian, in the Basque Country. However, it’s become a popular pintxo all over Spain. The classic version is a guindilla pepper, a Cantabrian anchovy fillet, and a manzanilla olive on a toothpick.

I’ve been to Bar Nuri twice, and we ordered the obligatory pan con tomate both times to go with all the small plates. 


A section of the menu is called salads and features many classic Catalan dishes. On my second visit, we ordered the xató and escalivada. Xató is a rich salad made of curled endive, desalted cod, olives, anchovies preserved in olive oil and a delicious sauce similar to Romesco and Salvitxada. It’s a really refreshing salad. We also got the escalivada, another Catalan dish, which is basically grilled vegetables, but they’re grilled for so long that the vegetables practically melt in your mouth. 

Dishes from the sea

There’s a section on the menu dedicated to dishes that “bring you closer to the sea”. During our first visit, we ordered tellerines/coquinas (wedge clams) and pulpo (octopus) with grilled potatoes and paprika. Both were delicious, but I’m probably biased as I love these two dishes all the time anyway!

On our second visit, we got steamed mejillones (mussels) and grilled zamburiñas (variegated scallops). The mussels were actually fairly average, probably the only dish we had that wasn’t outstanding. The scallops on the other hand were incredibly and perfectly cooked. 


Sharing plates

Another section of the menu is called sharing plates and, from what I can tell, this is all the fried stuff. On both occasions, we ordered the patatas bravas. They are some of the best in the city, so do not miss out!

But during our first visit, we went a little crazy with this section. We got the aubergine chips with cane honey and lime peel, which apparently is a popular tapa throughout the region of Andalusia. We also got the buñuelos de bacalao (fried dough fritters stuffed with salted cod) with alioli, and fried sea anemone. Everything was yummy, especially the buñuelos, but because everything was fried it felt a bit heavy. This is why on our second visit we ordered more grilled dishes and salads!


Bar Nuri also has specials every day. On our first visit, we got fried little red mullets with padron peppers. I loved these little fishes, they are so yummy and to me are the epitome of summer. 

On our second visit, we got a larger dish special, bacalao a la llauna. It’s a Catalan dish made with a combination of salt cod, flour, garlic, paprika or pimentón, parsley, and olive oil. The cod was served in a tomato sauce and it was simply divine!


Bar Nuri has an impressive dessert menu, packed full of wonderful classics. On our first visit, we went for the crema catalana, flan and el catalanet, which is turron gelato with Ratafia. The second time we got crema catalana again and this time cheesecake. Everything was delicious, though the crema catalana gets us every time!


I love Bar Nuri, it’s the perfect casual restaurant that feels like a bar but is home to some amazing cooks. I look forward to visiting again very soon. 

Looking for more Barcelona eats? Check out my other reviews here.

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