Sunday, July 15, 2007

Chinese food in Barcelona? ¡Claro que sí!


Barcelona is blessed when it comes to food! Not only are there great Catalan, Spanish and Mediterranean dishes to be had at restaurants throughout the city, but international gastronomy abounds, too. Asian food is particularly popular here and that, of course, includes Chinese cuisine.
.
About once a week or so I get a craving for good Chinese food. When this happens, I usually head for a place that has tasty dishes, friendly staff, an excellent view and great prices -- the Pato Pekin Puerto Olímpico.
.
Located in the Port Olímpic area just beyond Barceloneta Beaches, the restaurant actually overlooks the marina. You can either enjoy your meal in the large dining room with a glass wall facing the sea or outside on the balcony, pictured in the photo to the right, which is one floor up from the paseo below. (By the way, "Port Olímpic" is the name as it is written in Catalan and, therefore, how it appears on local maps, signs, etc. "Puerto Olímpico" is Spanish and how many people refer to the area as well as the way the restaurant spells it.)
.
On weekdays Pato Pekin has two set lunch menus to choose from, one priced 7.95, the other 10.95. For dinner and weekends, the special menus are priced 10.65 and 12.79 respectively. Each menu offers a choice of first plate, main plate, side dish, drink and dessert or coffee. You can also order a la carte from their dim sum menu or from their regular menu, which is quite varied.
.
The set menus are too lengthy to list in their entireties, so just to give you an idea, here are a few samples of what's on offer from the dinner/weekend menus:
.
For 12.79 you can choose items such as a house salad, seafood soup or sauteed mixed vegetables for a first plate; followed by a main dish of cuttlefish and green pepper, king prawn with vegetables or sweet and sour duck; along with a side dish of white rice, rice "especial" or Chinese bread.
.
On the 10.65 menu, among the choices for starters are egg rolls, fried wan-tons and chicken noodle soup. A few examples of main plates are lemon chicken, beef with vegetables and steamed whole fish. Some of the side dishes available include white rice, rice "tres delicias" and noodles with vegetables.
.
All menus include a choice of wine, beer, soft drink or bottled water. After your meal you can choose coffee, tea or one of the following desserts: a scoop of ice cream, flan, mango, lemon mousse, fruit salad, fried apple with honey, fried banana with honey or a "comtessa." Comtessa is simple but sinfully delicious -- a deep crystal dish filled with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.
.
Those are only a few examples from the weekend and night-time set menus. The weekday lunch menus are not only cheaper, at 7.95 and 10.95, but have even wider selections!
.
Being a creature of habit, I most often go to the Pato Pekin on sunny Sunday's to enjoy the view from the balcony, a leisurely newspaper read and, of course, a delicious meal. I typically order fried wan-tons to begin with, which are always served fresh, warm and crisp. For the main plate and side dish I usually go with beef in oyster sauce and white rice. I ask for this to be prepared "un poco picante" (a little spicy) and it is always perfect -- a generous serving of beef sauteed with mushrooms, onion, garlic, green pepper and bamboo shoots. All of this, plus drink and dessert, costs only 10.95!
.
Good food in a stylish, relaxing setting -- there's nothing much better.
.
C/ de la Marina, 16-18 (take the escalator or stair up one floor)
08005 Barcelona
Tel: 93 225 41 41

No comments: