An air of nostalgia and familiarity envelopes us as we enter Bodega la Palma, an emblematic corner in the Gothic quarter of Barcelona that has more than 80 years of history. It opened in 1935 first as a grocery store, however, five years later it began to function as a winery. It quickly became a classic during that era, where intellectuals, poets and creative artists such as García Estragués and Hernández Pijuan met to present their works and use the winery as a meeting point for intellectual gatherings. Albert, one of the current owners, points out that even Dalí was seen in the cellar during those years.
It wasn’t until the end of the 80’s that the business changed owners within the same family and was renamed “Mrs. Maria’s Cellar”, and it was Mrs. Maria who decided to include a coffee maker and start offering traditional tapas and dishes to accompany the vintage wines from the winery. Currently Bodega la Palma is owned by Judith and Albert, a couple of neighbors who decided to take control of the local history. Their idea is to maintain the essence of the winery and at the same time modernize its gastronomic proposal without losing the traditional flavors of Catalan cuisine.
Its design, consisting of wooden seats, marble tables and a classic bar preserved from the original premises, transports us to Barcelona during the 80’s. On the other hand, and in line with the current gastronomic trends, they highlight the use of organic products, products of proximity and market products for the creation of their tapas and dishes.
The pea croquettes with mint and squid ink arrive first at our table, and are an example of the new gastronomic proposals currently offered by Bodega la Palma – traditional flavors with a nod to the culinary trends of the moment. We continue with exquisite cannelloni of roasted veal, and trumpets of death and currants; a dish that surprises us with its creamy texture and its rich flavor, a great homage to a classic dish. We were also surprised by the delicious combination of flavors of the secret Iberian coca with cake of casar and piquillo peppers. And if you want a classic, do not forget to try its assortment of Catalan sausages, the Moorish and the classic tapa of a potato omelette, accompanied by vermouth made in house, or one of its specially selected delicious wines.
To finish an evening full of history and flavor, we taste a Sorento lemon sorbet, Trepat wine and fried mint, which leaves a soft and sweet taste in our mouths. Bodega la Palma is a classic that has been able to stay in business over the years, preserving history and gastronomic tradition as one of its main attractions today. Without a doubt a safety pin of the route of emblematic wineries in Barcelona.
Phone: 933 150 656
Hours: Monday to Saturday from noon to midnight
Text and Photos: Kathrin Behrens Varela