"paco merlago pan tomate

Eat at Paco Merlago because I said so

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I’m still working through my many photos from my adventure at 41° but wanted to stay on a roll with Barcelona and put out a quick and easy post.

I had 46 restaurants on my Barcelona map, all highly recommended from many different sources from all over the internet.  Because of the advance research I do on trips, I don’t spend a lot of time when I’m traveling hemming and hawing over what to eat which leaves me more time to slow down, relax and soak up the city.

Paco Merlago was a short walk from my apartment, which is a big plus after a long day of walking the city.  It gets very busy  so we decided to go early to get there before the rush.  Lucky for us, locals eat late, so early was a bit after 8pm, which is actually a normal dinner time for us!  I was a bit disappointed because it seemed that most of the diners were not local, but now I realize that had more to do with the timing of our visit as the locals started streaming in after 9:30.

In a city with a few tapas bars every block that virtually serves the exact same menu, how do you know which is better than another?  Well, this time it’s because I’m telling you that the tapas at Paco Merlago is a notch above the rest.  Or at least I thought it was very special.

"paco merlago pan tomate
Pa amb tomàquet (tomatoes squished on toasted bread) – the best version I sampled.
"paco merlago padron"
Pimientos de Padrón – no spicy ones in this plate.
"paco merlago squid"
Txipirones – fried baby squid
"paco merlago sausage"
Iberian ham assortment – all 3 unique and great eaten with the tomato bread.
"paco merlago artichoke"
Alcachofas fritas (fried artichokes) – crisp and meaty, again these were the best artichokes we tried.
"paco merlago jamon"
Jamón Ibérico de Bellota – the finest ham made from pigs fed with acorns. A Spanish delicacy I was happy to finally taste.
"paco merlago rabbit"
Little rabbit chops fried in a chili garlic oil – so addictive that even though we had other food in front of us, I couldn’t stop eating these until they were done.
"paco merlago crema"
Crema Catalana – I thought I was getting a flan, this was a runny creme brule. Not my favourite but didn’t take away from the rest of the amazing food.

The quality of food, coupled with the relaxed and friendly atmosphere makes Paco Merlago a great choice.  So much so, we went back on our last night in Barcelona to sample more of the food.  I wanted to experience the meal fully, so no photos from that night, but additional dishes from that night that were winners included the bomba (spicy potato fritter) and navajas (razor clams).

"Paco merlago"

Paco Merlago – C/Mutaner 171 (@Corsega), Barcelona, Spain

3 Replies to “Eat at Paco Merlago because I said so”

  1. We loved Paco Meralgo too! It was close to our hotel, which was very convenient. We also thought they had the best pa amb tomaquet and it was where we were first introduced to razor clams. Yum!

  2. Hello Sue, just the post I was looking for since i have my own trip to barcelona in the works. I have some reservations secured already (dos paillios, can roca, tickets…) I was just wondering if there was anyway I can see your map of restaurants in barcelona. It would be the perfect guide to have since I find your idea of good food very similar to my own. After the 41degree post I am also highly considering buying some tickets!

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