The Heart and Soul of Catalan Cuisine
“Originality consists of returning to the origin.” That’s a line from Antoni Gaudí. The human relationship with nature, expressing culture through art – the same principles that inspired the great Catalan architect to design his Sagrada Família have equally affected the founders of Barcelona Gaudí.
Located in what was once a four-story condo on Sukhumvit 23, Barcelona Gaudí stands conspicuous among the overgrown trees and power lines. The eyecatching vestibule was modelled after the work of the eponymous Gaudí, whose influence doesn’t stop at the door. “We want to share Catalonia, our home, food, and culture, with the people of Thailand,” says Jordi Bartés, who runs the restaurant with his brother, Jaume, and Thai partner, Sittiset Wongwaiwut, “from the red caps [our people wear] to the mosaics on the wall.”
To lead the kitchen, the brothers brought in long-time friend and fellow Catalan, Marc Font. The chef, who cut his teeth at Michelin-starred restaurants in Spain and worked with David Thompson at Nahm, looked to his roots for inspiration. The result is deeply satisfying comfort food.
Starting with a platter of Rei Croqueta (B300), a feast of variegated croquettes stuffed with delicate blends like eggplant and cheese, chicken and serrano ham, and squid and prawns, the menu opens up to rustic dishes made with sentiment and pride. Quintessential tapas include Gambes a L’allet (B200), tender prawns cooked in an irresistible garlic aioli, and Mandonguilles (B100), pork meatballs with squid, browned in the pot and prepared with a robust sauce that’s best sopped up with crusty bread. Of the house specialties, Parc Güell (B460) is particularly notable. Although simple in theory, this codfish, cooked with the same mouth-watering aioli, bursts with piquant, complex flavours.
For a hearty lunch, try one of the sandwiches, like the Coca Pollastre (B100). Caramelized onions and parmesan cheese enhance tender sliced chicken, which comes hot on grilled rustic bread. Top off any meal with a classic Crema Catalana (B120), custard spiced with vanilla and cinnamon and covered with a layer of torched sugar, giving it a look and texture similar to crème brûlée.
On weekends, the chef whips up a massive platter of paella, saffron rice teeming with mussels, prawns, and chicken legs, on the terrace. The outdoor party is part of the effort to get the local community involved with Catalan culture. These restaurateurs are proud of their heritage, and they’re not afraid to show it.
Le Premier 1 Condo, Sukhumvit 23 | 0 2661 7410
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