Boca Chica / Boca Grande

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We were so happy to discover Boca Chica/ Boca Grande on our trip to Barcelona in november of 2011. This then new bar and restaurant, just off Passeig de Gracia, simply oozed brilliance. It had been open since August and had already managed to become all the rage. To us, it felt like a spark of hope in this beautiful city that was being hit hard by the crisis. After reading some reviews online I found out opinions are divided, it seems like a love it or hate it kind of place.

Boca Chica (the bar) and Boca Grande (the restaurant) are initiatives by Juan Soler who is already running the two Big Fish restaurants in the city. Just like for Big Fish, Soler depended on interior architect Lázaro Rosa-Violán for the decoration of the place. The result is an interior that is both sober and eccentric and reminds you of restaurants in New York (The Standard GrillPastisBalthazar & The John Dory Oyster Bar come to mind.)

The restaurant serves mainly fish courses and there’s a large display of seafood in the middle of the space. The rest of the ground floor is decorated with maps, industrial lamps and mainly… bottles.

The basement is where you need to be for what may be the coolest restrooms on the planet. They’re unisex, there’s a million mirrors,  and a DJ booth. Yep, a DJ booth! When we returned in May of 2013, we were sad to see that the Polar bear that was hanging on the restroom wall had been taken down.

And then there’s the bar upstairs. I guess the vibe can be described Colonial Chic. A mix of Indian and African influences with luxurious materials and original decoration items thrown into one big -and beautiful- melting pot. You can have your pre-dinner drinks here and enjoy one of their many cocktails, like we did, or just spend the evening lounging.

I think what got me most in this place, is the eye for detail. The waiters wear colonial inspired shirts. The typography of menus is impeccable. The bathroom has a freaking DJ Booth. I’m a sucker for things like that. I would definitely give this place a ten out of ten on decor. And that does not happen a lot.

We recommend you to at least have cocktails at Boca Chica. Avoid the weekend if you can.

 

Passatge de la Concepció, 12
08008 Barcelona
Opening hours:
Mon:15:00 – 16:00, 20:00 – 2:00
Tue:13:00 – 2:00
Wed:20:00 – 2:00
Thu – Fri:15:00 – 3:00
Sat:14:00 – 15:00, 21:00 – 3:00
Sun:13:00 – 17:00, 21:00 – 2:00