Restaurants / Spain

Can Maño – Barcelona, Spain

Barceloneta Beach

Barceloneta Beach

Barcelona: the city with that famous building that hasn’t even been fully built yet (Sagrada Familia); home of that painter guy who drew squares and faces and whatnot with a thick brush (Picasso); and location of that super expensive restaurant turned tapas bar (El Bulli turned Tickets) run by that guy who cooks that molecular gastronomy thing like that Heston fella on TV (Ferran Adrià).

Ok, summing up the city in such arbitrary fashion doesn’t do Barcelona justice. But I figure that everyone you hear from who has visited the place has already banged on about what a brilliant city it is. It is. It’s sick as.

Sagrada Familia, proudly still under construction since 1882.

Sagrada Familia, proudly still under construction since 1882.

By the time I reached Barcelona on my trip, I was nearing the end of my bank account. But that’s the other great thing about Barcelona, you don’t have to spend much at all to enjoy the place. Although granted, you can spend a shit tonne of money and also enjoy it too. But choose the right days and the museo’s are free, most of the major sites are free to enter, bike hire is easy and doesn’t cost that much, and most importantly the vino costs 2 euro for the bottle. Bam, cheap holiday.

In my scroogey budget tour of Barcelona, I found this fantastic little seafood restaurant Can Maño. It was 7:50pm, and the restaurant opened at 8pm and already there was a hungry queue stretching down the road. At 8pm the doors flew open and the queue poured into this tiny, wood panelled, fluorescent lit restaurant. The tables were covered in plastic, each seat had a paper placemat that said “Good Appetite”. A little man walked around handing out food stained paper menus. This was certainly budget life.

Through the window at Can Maño. Nice, efficient lighting.

Through the window at Can Maño. Nice, efficient lighting.

So everything on the menu is under 10 euro. The menu offers no explanation. You choose your sea animal of choice, such as mackerel, sardines, prawns, squit [sic], red mullet, cuttlefish etc, whatever appears out of the ocean that day. They either grill it, or fry it, the choice is not up to you if you don’t know Spanish. They slap it onto a white plate and it appears in front of you with a quiet grunt from the waiter. I don’t know what they do, but this shit was off the hook. Zero presentation, 100% good taste. Pair it up fried capsicum or aubergine sides, a cheap glass of house wine and you have yourself a crazy good meal that reflects the effortless vibrancy of the Catalan capital. Good times.

Grilled cuttlefish

Grilled cuttlefish

Info: c/Baluard 12, Barceloneta ph: 933 193 082

[Vegetarian?] no – [Vegan?] no – [Gluten Free?] ok – [Dairy Free?] ok

How much money to bring: 10-15 euro

OK to bring a date? No

Opening times: Mon– Fri 8am–5.30pm & 8–11pm, Sat noon–5pm; closed Aug

Don’t: expect paella. This is strictly a paella free zone.

Do: prepare to line up.

Sounds like: Davilla 666 – Esa Nena Nunca Regreso

Rating: 3/5

Others who have blogged about it: Moonraker Morsels, Barcelona Food Girl

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