Barcino Takes You On A Tour Around Spain Right At Your Table

Barcino has always been my go-to place for Spanish cuisine whenever I felt a craving for it. The food here always had the right amount of authenticity and class without going too fancy-schmancy like many other tapas bars that have started to pop up around the Metro. After all, tapas in Spain is very casual, affordable, and in many places still free with your round of drinks!

I know I can’t expect the Spanish tradition of free tapas to spill over to the Philippines but at least in Barcino, I’m not paying an arm, a leg and my left kidney for it! Needless to say, it still isn’t cheap to dine here. However, I find the value for money to be fair.

On my latest visit, I tried out several new additions to the freshly revamped menu. The meal took me on a trip around my beloved Spain. Let me take you on that tour as well:

Chorizo and Cheese Platter (Php1,690)

CHORIZO AND CHEESE PLATTER: We started the meal with the customary cheese and cold cuts platter. You really can’t go wrong with a board filled with an assortment of sausages, hams and cheeses from Spain. Of course, this appetizer medley needed a rich bottle of red wine to go with it.

Coca de Sardinas (Php275.00)

COCA DE SARDINAS: I must admit, I was a bit skeptical when I first saw whole sardines on top of this Catalan flatbread dish. I thought it was going to be fishy or “malansa.” Luckily, I gave it a shot and I was pleasantly surprised. The fish wasn’t overpowering despite the generous serving. After indulging in all the meat and cheese from our appetizer platter, this was a refreshingly light and flavorful option. Sriracha gave it some heat and a twist of Asian fusion.

Mejillones Tigre Rellenos (Php295.00)

MEJILLONES TIGRE RELLENOS: Even though mussels are common in he Philippines, we’ve never had them quite in the same way as they do it in Barcino. These large, deep-fried shells are filled with mussel meat made decadent with bechamel sauce enveloped by a golden brown crust. You don’t need to get out of your seat to explore the northern regions of Spain through this dish.

Mejillones Pipirrana (Php225.00)

MEJILLONES PIPIRRANA: Speaking of mussels, we couldn’t really have it just one way. After the rich, deep fried goodness of the first version, we headed down to the south of Spain to the Andalusia region to try out a light and refreshing take on this well-loved shellfish. Mejillones Pipirrana is a cold salad made out of mussels, tomatoes, red and green bell peppers all dressed with olive oil and red wine vinegar. Also served on the shell, this colorful dish offers a tangy twist that cuts through the richness of the other items on the table.

Salpicon de Pulpo y Gambas (Php550.00)

SALPICON DE PULPO Y GAMBAS (Php550.00): Just like the Mejillones Pipirrana, this dish reminds me a little bit of our local kilawin or ceviche. Pieces of octopus and tiger prawns are tossed with onions, parsley, red and green bell peppers, then seasoned with a red wine vinaigrette. You can’t really tell because the pieces were all chopped up, but there’s a really generous amount of octopus and prawns in this dish. It can be a light meal in itself!

Croquetas Jamon y Pollo (Php300.00)

CROQUETAS JAMON Y POLLO: I have ordered this dish countless times in Barcino and many other places in Spain and elsewhere in the world. Definitely a safe option for anyone who isn’t too adventurous. Perfectly crispy and golden brown on the outside, but soft and creamy on the inside. A real treat!


While I would like to believe that I’m only at Barcino for tapas, the truth is, it almost always turns into a full meal. Most Filipinos do the same and a Filipino meal isn’t complete without rice. Luckily, there’s a good number of choices at Barcino.

Paella Negra (Php580.00)

PAELLA NEGRA: This best-selling dish is popular for a reason. Even though it is simply topped with squid rings and aioli, the rich, dark squid ink provides a depth of flavor that’s attractively exotic. Even though paella is typically eaten as a stand-alone meal in itself, The Paella Negra’s simplicity also makes it the perfect rice dish to be eaten alongside a selection of main courses just the way Filipinos like to have their rice.

Paella de Rabo de Toro (Php795.00)

PAELLA DE RABO DE TORO: One of the newest dishes on the menu, this paella with ox tail is my new favorite! The simple rice dish, topped with melt-in-your-mouth slices of tender ox tail stewed in red wine is a great alternative to a seafood paella. The perfectly cooked bomba rice and top quality meat makes this the one thing you really must try on your next visit.


Pimientos del Piquillo Rellenos de Carne (Php325.00)

PIMIENTOS DEL PIQUILLO RELLENOS DE CARNE: As the name literally suggests, these are piquillo red bell peppers stuffed with ground pork and topped with creamy paprika bechamel sauce and cheese. because it’s so rich, you’re going to want to have this with lots of slices of crusty bread.

Callos a la Madrilena (Php570.00)

CALLOS A LA MADRILENA: I make a mean callos so I am quite biased when it comes to this dish. Even in Spain, I almost always like my own version a bit more. One thing I can say about the callos in Barcino is that they really put a lot of time and effort into preparing their ox tripe. Theirs has been slow-cooked to a beautifully tender consistency that I have not been able to achieve myself. The spices are spot-on and I’m tempted to ask for a serving of plain rice.

Crema Catalana (Php210.00)

CREMA CATALANA: No meal is really complete without dessert. We tried out Barcino’s version of the Crema Catalana, a classic flan-like dessert. It’s similar to our local leche flan or the more internationally-known creme brulee. The rich egg-custard is topped with a torched sugar crust. An extra twist is added with a hint of cinnamon.

The entire meal was washed down with pitchers of SANGRIA (Php890/glass Php295) and glasses of Spanish wine.

Barcino still gets a 5/5 for me. I will defiitely be back to try out all the new additions on the ever-evolving menu. It also helps that more branches are opening up around the city.

To find a location near you and to see the full menu, visit their profile on Zomato:
Barcino Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato