Café de la Pedrera: Dinner with Gaudí
Text: Esme Fox | Photos © Cafè De La Pedrera
If you are visiting the Catalan capital, chances are you will be visiting some of maverick architect Antoni Gaudí’s famous buildings: and at one of the most wellknown – La Pedrera – you can eat inside it too.
Situated on the elegant Passeig de Gràcia boulevard, surrounded by designer boutiques and luxury hotels, Cafè de la Pedrera is located inside Gaudí’s renowned masterpiece of the same name.
Commissioned by the Mila family, Gaudí designed and oversaw construction of the building between 1906 and 1912. At the time, there was considerable opposition to the building and people were opposed to its quirky style. Fast forward 107 years, however, and today, it is one of the most celebrated buildings in the city, welcoming around 3,000 visitors per day.
Whilst thousands of visitors tour La Pedrera, not many know that you can dine here too, admiring parts of the interior without the crowds, and without having to buy a ticket. “The space was first occupied by Restaurante de la Pensión Hispanoamericana, and more than 100 years later, in 2012, the restaurant reopened as Cafè de la Pedrera,” says manager Ana Alvarado.
Inside, it is elegant, yet relaxed, with many reminders that you are sitting inside one of Gaudí’s most renowned works. Think swirly-patterned ceilings that make you feel as if you are sitting under a sea of waves, organically-shaped pillars and quirky lamps.
During the day, the space feels light, bright and informal, whilst by night, atmospheric lighting and Gaudí’s undulating ceiling transform the café into an intimate, romantic venue.
Smart waiters in starched uniforms serve guests throughout the day – whether it is for breakfasts, lunches, tapas or main meals. In the mornings, there is toast and eggs as well as coffee and cakes in the afternoons. Alternatively, for lunch or dinner, there are both à la carte and set menus with Mediterranean-inspired dishes such as cod with samphire; pork ribs with honey and soya sauce; or steak with potato puree and black chanterelle mushrooms. “We use quality produce to create Catalan classics with a modern touch, without losing the authenticity of the product,” explains Alvarado.
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