La Estrella - a Family Affair
I had La Estrella restaurant on my list of places to go to for a long time. I had heard very good things about it, but I didn’t see how this place would be any different from any other local taberna-style place in the city. Oh was I proved wrong when I finally went there..!
The restaurant is slightly hidden on a back street next to the train station. It’s not a very big place, so it gets full: book a table in advance. The menu is all fine and good, but then the owner comes and explains you the specials… And you have no idea of what you should order. You want everything!
The specials are seasonal and/or specialties that the owner’s grandmother used to make when she worked in the restaurant. And some of the ingredients are very special: razor clams that come from the Ebro Delta and aren’t available in any markets in the city, just to name an example.
IN A NUTSHELL:
Atmosphere: An old-school kind of place, but without being too scruffy. It's been renovated recently and it is now bright and beautiful, with new gorgeous kitchenware.
Recommended: The small razor clams (canyuts) with almonds are out of this world. These razor clams are not sold in the markets in Barcelona, and the taste is unforgettable. The violet flower ice cream is lovely too...
Specifics: Anything outside the printed menu! The menu is good, but when the owner comes and explains you all the (usually seasonal) dishes it gets really difficult to choose which ones you’d like.
Reservations: Necessary. A table by the window is recommended if it’s just two of you.