It was our last weekend in Barcelona and on Saturday we had a lovely meal with pals at a new restaurant called 'Caravelle' (review to come later) and then we had a few drinky poos at Casa Almirall, which I like to refer to as the 'ambient bar' due to the delightful low lighting.
Unfortunately, I suffer quite badly from hangovers that then turn into migraines so I avoid drinking too much/indulging in the dark side when I have things to do the next day. So, with my health in mind, I bade farewell to my pals who intended to go on to a club, my loved one included.
Fast-forward to 7am and I woke up to discover that the loved one was not there. What a naughty scamp of a boyfriend I have! I rang him all ready to be indignant and cool but the little git always manages to sweet talk me into submission. He proposed that we go for breakfast and coffee- all romantic like. For about a minute I thought 'Feck off. I am NOT getting out of bed to meet you and your post-club stench' but then I realised it would be the perfect opportunity to take some early morning snaps without tourists poking their ugly faces in. I coldly assured him that I was only coming to meet him for this reason, threw on my clothes and marched out the door.
And this is some of what I saw:
Lovely empty lanes in the old Jewish quarter. There wasn't a soul in sight except for the man you can see in the bottom left-hand corner. He gave me a fright after I turned the corner and cackled at me with a toothless grin and wild eyes and said 'No tienes mierdo, rubia'--- I wanted to say 'Erm, it's 7am and there isn't anyone here except you, me and the echo of your cackle. Of COURSE I'm a little bit scared' but I didn't. I just gave him a sleepy grin and stood my ground (with one eye on the camera and one eye on his funny face). CREEP.
I wandered out of the Gotic and down Calle Ferran, which was deserted and walked all the way through Born, which was also deserted. I was excited to get to the Santa Maria del Mar but unfortunately a gaggle of goons were lurking around outside, ruining my snapshot. Eventually I got to the flat where my loved one was waiting and we set off through town to the only nice place that I knew might be open.
Have you ever been to Escriba? It's right in the middle of La Rambla (next to La Boqueria Market) and heaving with tourists but as it was so early, we were the only ones there. It's a family-run business and famous for its chocolate and pastries. They have a couple of places dotted around town, including a huge bakery on Gran Via with the most amazing kitchen that I was lucky enough to have a tour of once.
The cafe and shop is in a stunning Gothic building with archways, mosaic details and embossed with gold. See for yourself why don't you:
I indulged in a bikini, which is a toasted sandwich with ham and cheese and Rob Roy had a 'cremadet' which is a crispy, caramelised pastry filled with custard. It's pretty damn tasty, let me tell you that!
If you're feeling more savoury, they also have fantastic mini-quiches. There is also an incredible display of carefully crafted desserts and charming chocolates. Perfect for an afternoon pick me up.
If you're looking for somewhere that is open early on a Sunday morning (and many places aren't!) then this is a great place for a light breakfast. You'll be amazed how quiet La Rambla is... It's quite interesting to watch it slowly fill up with the street entertainers and mindless tourists with vacant gazes, wandering around like cattle on valium. I'm not anti-tourism, but when you live in a city that attracts so many people, it's pretty tedious trying to go about your daily grind with a thousand morons milling around with all the time in the world.
Get out of my way dingbats! I have things to do!