Where to Get the Best Paella in Barceloneta, Barcelona

© Michela Simoncini
© Michela Simoncini
The Barceloneta is the historic fishing district of Barcelona, nestled between the open sea on the one side and the Marina Port Vell on the other. A lively neighbourhood where old and new coexist, the Barceloneta is famous for its seafood restaurants and classic tapas bars, many of which have been on the go for decades. These, however, are the restaurants to visit for the best paella in the district.

Restaurant Barceloneta

Restaurant, Diner, Spanish, Seafood, Mediterranean, European, $$$

One of the most well-regarded seafood restaurants in Barcelona, the Barceloneta restaurant is located on the docks of the Marina Port Vell and overlooks the luxurious super-yacht port. The dining room is reminiscient of a ship’s hull, with porthole windows and brass finishings completing the nautical theme. There’s a relatively wide range of rice dishes to choose from, although the Moll del Rellotge paella is a favourite and combines fish and local seafood.

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Restaurant, Seafood, Spanish, Mediterranean, 0

Located at the very end of the Barceloneta, overlooking the sea and the prestigious W Hotel, Kaiku is a traditional Catalan restaurant offering quality fare at good prices. Specialising in unpretentious, homemade Catalan cuisine, the restaurant offers a choice of different rice dishes, including the house special paella, which is prepared using smoked rice to give it a deep aroma.

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Restaurant Can Solé

Restaurant, Spanish, Seafood, Mediterranean, $$$
A generous platter of mussels
A generous platter of mussels | © CC0 / Pixabay

Founded in 1903, Can Solé is a veritable Barceloneta institution and has been patronised by some of the city’s most notorious figures, such as artist Joan Miró or singer Joan Manuel Serrat. The restaurant is renowned for its rice dishes, which are the reason everyone comes here. While the paella is superb, the slightly wetter Can Solé ‘rice in fish broth with local lobster’ is the real show-stopper, with its deep-flavoured sauce and tender chunks of lobster.

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Restaurante 7 Portes

Cafe, Restaurant, Spanish, Seafood, Mediterranean, European, $$$
The Parellada Paella at 7 Portes
The Parellada Paella at 7 Portes | © Vinicius Pinheiro

Another Barcelona institution, the Restaurante 7 Portes has occupied the same place since 1836 when it was known as the ‘Café de les 7 Portes’. In the 1940s the restaurant was taken over by the Parellada family, under whose ownership it remains today and who have put their name to the signature Parellada paella. Popular with locals and tourists alike, the restaurant’s grand dining room, with its white table cloths and checkered floor tiles, offers a glimpse of the Barcelona of days gone by.

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La Mar Salada

Restaurant, Seafood, Spanish, $$$

Located among the many seafood restaurants that line the Passeig Joan de Borbó, La Mar Salada is a sophisticated seafood restaurant offering contemporary Catalan cuisine in a bright, modern setting. The menu features a number of creative takes on traditional dishes, including some rather tantalising desserts. The paella, however, is prepared the good old-fashioned way, and features crayfish and shrimp caught around the Barceloneta’s shores.

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Restaurant Can Ros

Restaurant, Seafood, Spanish, Mediterranean, European, $$$
A rathe rustic paella
A rathe rustic paella | © Elizabeth K. Joseph

When it opened in 1908, Can Ros was a humble wine cellar that catered to the local fishermen, before going on to serve a small selection of rustic tapas back in the 1950s. Today the restaurant is appreciated by locals for its budget-friendly prices and traditional atmosphere. The ‘Master’s rice’ comes topped with mussels, prawns, and small baby squid, and, despite its name, is a rather humble paella. But in the days where most fancy restaurants adorn theirs with lobster, Can Ros offers a more authentic taste of what locals eat on a regular basis.

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Restaurant, Seafood, Spanish, Mediterranean, European, $$$

Looking through the window of Meson you wouldn’t think the restaurant had been around since the 1940s with its modern, laid-back design. Yet behind this contemporary veneer, the menu features classic dishes alongside a few more modern ones. While this may not be the most authentic paella experience around, Meson’s menu also offers plenty of choice for those dining with children or less adventurous eaters.

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