|La Fonda del Port Olimpic Restaurant|
La Fonda del Port Olimpic is located at the heart of Barcelona's tourist area in the port. It is sandwiched between other tourist restaurants, clubs and fast food chains. Its setting suggests that it may be modern and even possibly a little touristy. However, the restaurant itself is traditional, well-run and quite charming.
As you would expect from its location, a large amount of the restaurant's menu is seafood, however, there are also meat, pasta and other traditionally Catalan options. As with seafood in general on Barcelona, prices are quite high (dinner mains start at around €20.00). However, I went to try the restaurant's Menu del Dia - a three course set menu. What the food lacked in quality, it made up for in quantity and nice touches - free olives at the start of the meal and a plate of cake and biscuits at the end were a welcome surprise at such affordable rates.
Menu Del Dia: €12.00
|Calamari at La Fonda|
On being seated at my table I was immediately provided with a plate of olives - no better way to keep a hungry person patient. The Menu del Dia offered more options for each course than I have ever seen for a lunchtime menu before - some with and some without supplements. Before the starter I was offered a bowl of homemade gazpacho - fresh, chilled and slightly zingy - definitely one of the highlights of the meal.
For starter, on my waiter's recommendations, I opted for the calamari. These were served on a paper doily that became greasy from the batter slightly too quickly. However, the fish was fresh and not in the slightest rubbery. Other starter options included mussels and ravioli in cheese sauce.
For main course I ordered the black rice. This did not contain the variety of seafood that I have come to expect from Barcelona paella - simply calamari and mussels. However the portion was large and the rice was cooked perfectly. Other main course options included lamb or salmon with potatoes and other grilled seafood.
For dessert I enjoyed a slice of chocolate mousse cake. It did not taste homemade and was lacking in the chocolateyness that I was craving, however it was a nice light end to the meal. It was accompanied by a plate of small coffee biscuits and slices of chewy but moist sponge - a accompaniment addition to the coffee that was included in the price.
All of this came served with a generous portion of 'pan con tomate' (bread rubbed with tomato). By the time the meal was complete I had eaten more food than I thought possible for a mere €12.00.
|The Interior of La Fonda|
La Fonda is a large restaurant with seats within the restaurant itself and also within a covered outdoor area, where heaters and wooden flooring give the feeling of being indoors. The restaurant's style is classic with a slightly nautical feel. Large tables are covered in patterned silk yellow tablecloths. Blue and yellow crockery is covered in sea themed artwork.
The tables are wide enough and the chairs heavy enough to give a sense of occasion to dinners there.
The restaurant's cat who sits and stares up at you while you eat put me slightly off my gazpacho, but if you're an animal lover this may add extra charm.
The service at La Fonda is efficient and friendly. However, it also gave me a sense of the size of the restaurant. Rather than having one waiter who takes you through your meal, various waiters will serve you at different stages. I would have preferred just one waiter - if you build up some rapport with your waiter when ordering your meal, it is then disappointing to not see them again for the rest of your meal. Food is served in batches coinciding with your neighbouring tables, so be prepared to receive your main course before you have finished your starter.
Despite how busy the smartly dressed waiters are, they are still helpful and communicative in answering questions that you have and on my visit they never forgot an additional request. They even found me a map of Barcelona for me following an enquiry about the area.
La Fonda del Port Olimpic is a traditional Catalan restaurant that would be more at home in the small streets of the old town or in the local neighbourhood of Barceloneta. The food is standard but is good value. The venue is popular and was bustling with people from midday onwards.
La Fonda del Port Olimpic is located next to the beach front. It is necessary to walk towards Barceloneta's promenade - heading for the Hotel Arts or the big golden fish. To your right you will see a large Casino. To your left you will see steps leading down to the tourist outdoor complex area - Moll de Gregal. Head down these steps - the restaurant is directly in front of you, a 2 minute walk away.
La Fonda del Port Olímpic
Moll de Gregal, 7 - 10
08005 Barcelona, España.
Tel: +34 93 221 2210
Metro: Ciutadella Villa Olimpic (Yellow Line, L4)