BAR MUT — Eixample
A new batch of high-end tapas bars has popped up recently. Several of them concentrated in the refined, tree lined Eixample district. Five year-old Bar Mut, just off the bustling Avinguda Diagonal, leads the pack with an airy, brasserie-like space that is as wonderful in the day, when it is flooded with sunshine, as it is late at night, when couples nudge closer together. A favored spot among Barcelona’s top chefs, the menu of Bar Mut contains many little plates typical of the area, but chef Albert Mendiola serves seasonal specialties as well.
Mendiola loves to experiment with unusual mixes for instance, crisp potato gallettes layered with sea urchin and roasted artichoke puree. There is an open prep kitchen in the pub itself, but Mendiola is normally at work in the cellar kitchen that is bigger, directing his three man team or adding the finishing touches to dishes which are as wonderfully composed as they are tasty.
The customers consist mainly of Barcelonans but travelers have begun to take note, meaning that snagging a seat during prime hours may be a task. Be sure to learn more about the remarkable wine-by the glass list, which in addition to Spanish whites and reds also contains rarer choices from France and Italy.
MUST TRY DISH Montadito de foie. Caramelized onions and foie gras sit atop a crusty slice of bread. Together with the balsamic and honey reduction in the bottom, it adds up to an explosion of tastes and an amazing interplay of savory and sweet flavors. $6.