Tucked away in the Raval, in the gardens of the Old Hospital Santa Creu, El Jardi is a quaint and very charming outdoor tapas bar and restaurant. Ideal during the spring and summer, the restaurant serves fresh salads and tapas and also features an extensive wine list. During the winter the outdoor heaters and blankets provide for a cozy and fairly warm atmosphere, while during the summer, it's hard to find a more romantic place to dine or to have an intimate evenings amongst friends. This is a fun place to take the kids and enjoy lunch on a beautiful terrace with the family.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: A unique spot for lunch and dinner and a beautiful family setting
Sam's expert tip: They don't take reservations so if you're going for lunch show up before 1:30pm if you want a table, especially during the summer
A beef lover's paradise, El Foro cooks a mean Argentinean bife de chorizo and is one of the few places in Barcelona that knows how to make a steak 'poco hecho' (bloody rare). This lively, airy and spacious restaurant is excellent for dates, parties or just an intimate evening out amongst friends. When it comes to lunch, they have a very affordable three-course lunch menu. Even if you're not a carnivore, you still have options; El Foro has an extensive menu including pasta, pizza and salad dishes amongst other Argentinean specialties. Every morning El Foro also features a small breakfast menu, with fresh orange juice; the restaurant also has free wi-fi.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: The best Argentinean Steak place in the city, great for families
Sam's expert tip: Try their Bianchi Malbec, an excellent and reasonably priced Argentinean wine.
A vegetarian oasis on the edge of the Raval neighborhood, Teresa Carles serves fresh vegetables and fruits, authentic salads and even brunch. This is a comfortable, relaxing, very warm and inviting place to enjoy breakfast, lunch, dinner and even takeaway. This is a large restaurant great for breakfast lunch or dinner. It's affordable and tasty and perfect for families looking for a relaxing, tasty and vegetarian meal. The tables are large and the staff often move several together to accommodate large groups. Their menus also cater to children and those in the mood for a healthy alternative to Barcelona's sometimes greasy tapas.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: A great vegetarian restaurant in the city center fun for families
Sam's expert tip: Try their breakfast and brunch menu served daily from 9am-2pm.
A trendy, young, lively and unique restaurant that specializes in Asian tapas. Mosquito has found its niche offering the most amazing Dim Sum and dumplings, you'll actually feel like you're in Hong Kong and China, while dipping into a wide variety of tapas amongst friends. Mosquito is a small locale in the heart of the Born, owned and run by a British native who spent years in Asia mastering the art of Asian cuisine. This place is always packed and for good reason. This is great for small families who want to experience Asian tapas in one of the city's coolest restaurants.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: Excellent Asian tapas in the city center with an unpretentious flare
Sam's expert tip: They have an excellent selection of local as well as international beer.
Excellent for tapas, wine or a cup of coffee, Re-Pla may be the more economical version of its well known sister restaurant, Pla, but it's tapas are just as delicious and the portions fairly large (for Spanish standards). This is a lively, hip restaurant in the Born neighborhood, great for cozying up on a rainy day or having a few drinks after work or on the weekend. Re-Pla has delicious Spanish and Catalan style tapas in a rustic setting in the Born. It's perfect for groups of friends an easy night out or a quick bite any day during the week.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: Tasty tapas in a relaxed environment in the Born
Sam's expert tip: Try their tuna salad
A hip, New York style gastro tapas bar in the heart of the Born neighborhood. Llamber is chic and trendy, set in a loft style setting with exposed brick and a mix of high top tables and regular seating. The restaurant prides itself on quality, fresh food from the market as well as it's incredible wine list with a whopping 30 wines by the glass. This is a chic new place in Barcelona to dine with friends or on a date. It's also great for family outings perhaps on a special occasion. It's quite roomy and great for large groups.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: The perfect place for a special family occasion. Amazing food and great wine.
Sam's expert tip: Try their salad it's incredible and innovative
An excellent gastro tapas bar in the Old City right near Arc De Triomf at the edge of the Born neighborhood. Elsa y Fred sports an early 1920's decor and provides an elegant understated vibe. It's a great place for a morning coffee and paper, tapas lunch and delicious dinner. On Tuesday nights they have Jazz and on weekends they're always packed for brunch. They also have a wonderful new breakfast menu with 'American Style' options such as omletes and pancakes depending on the day. This is a trendy, tapas restaurant/bistro in the Born and a great place for good conversation and a fun evening out.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: A trendy and tasty gastro tapas bar perfect for families
Sam's expert tip: Be sure to reserve in advance on Tuesdays and on the weekends
A slice of Paris in the heart of Barcelona's Ciutate Vella, if you're in the mood for a french cafe/bistro, this is the place to go. Run by all French staff, this rustic, quaint and incredibly personable cafe acts as a restaurant as well as a late night wine bar. It's an ideal place to set up shop and work for the day using their free Wi-Fi while sipping on a glass of Bordeaux accompanied with a plate of Comte cheese. An affordable and tasty place for families to dine, especially during the day when the terrace has great sun.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: A relaxing, delicious French bistro in the Old City
Sam's expert tip: Try their Comte and Ham salad
Charming, quaint and one of the only restaurants in Barcelona that takes reservations on their outdoor terrace, El Salon is a always a sure bet for out-of-towners, dates and intimate evenings amongst close friends. Featuring a mix of Catalan and French cuisine, the inside of the restaurant has a classic and authentic feel while the patio nestled out back creates a friendly and warm ambiance as it sits alongside several other bars and restaurants, all situated within close proximity of each other. This is a warm and friendly place for families to eat and the terrace provides for a unique and elegant touch.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: A great place to dine on the terrace in a family-friendly and warm atmosphere
Sam's expert tip: Try their Tuna Steak it's amazing
There are few Barcelona restaurants able to beat the charm, elegance and eclectic menu found at Montiel. Hidden on one of the narrow side streets in the Born, this small, two-story restaurant has mouth watering tapas, meats, starters and above all they have an excellent selection of fresh fish daily. One of the only places in the city that has fish on Mondays (for the most part fish is not caught and sold on Sundays), this is a sure bet for dates, guests or an intimate evening out. They have a great upper area with more seating than downstairs and this is ideal for family dinners.
Recommended for Family Friendly because: Excellent food in an invitiring and very family-friendly setting in the city center
Sam's expert tip: Try their sirloin steak and tuna tartar