El Racó del Mariner

the harbour


November 26th, 2015

Even though I’d previously lived in Barcelona for several years, I had no idea that El Racó del Mariner existed until a couple of weeks ago. El Racó del Mariner (The Fisherman’s Dock) is a bar/restaurant that caters for the fishermen working out of the harbour and to get there one must pass through a security gate with suitable ID – a European passport will suffice.

el racó del mariner

el racó del mariner

Having made it through Checkpoint Charlie we walked past wholesale fish businesses, which open at the crack of dawn (they are long closed by lunchtime), until we reached the harbour clock tower (la Torre del Rellotge). El Racó del Mariner is just to the left of the tower. We were seated in front of the door in a large, covered vestibule area. It was a warm sunny day but the restaurant provides space heaters for those who feel the cold. Oli, Sandra and myself were soon joined by friends Alfredo and Nookie.

fish platter

fish platter

We had intended to eat a giant paella and one must order the rice by phone on the morning of the table booking. However, when we called to make the order, we were told that the restaurant had run out of rice! To console ourselves, we made do with a giant plate of mixed seafood, including prawns, mussels, razor clams, swordfish, sea snails, crab claws and langoustines.

pa amb tomàquet

pa amb tomàquet

The fish arrived with pan con tomate – bread rubbed with garlic and tomato, plus a drizzle of olive oil on top.



Alfredo promptly ordered a plate of deep fried octopus tentacles (they were rubbery, but pleasant in a beef jerky kind of way)



and then mackerel.

fish balls

fish balls

Next came some astonishing deep fried fish balls – they are marinated over night and taste of spicy vinegar and cumin.

baby fish

baby fish

Our waiter informed us that they had fresh baby fish, including merlutha (hake) and rapé (monk fish)



and crispy anchovies – all were fantastic.

We got through several side orders of allioli and washed the fish down with cava.



I ordered a carajillo (coffee with brandy), which arrived with a complementary chupito (shot) stand containing hierbas,

crema de arroz con leche

crema de arroz con leche

crema de arroz con leche (rice pudding flavour) and a clear aguardiente – one helps oneself!

Thoroughly sated, we wandered out into the sun at about 5pm, en route for a wine festival. I believe lunch cost about €30 per head, but regular wine and paella would have been considerably cheaper.

El Racó del Mariner is at: Moll dels Pescadors s/n. Entrada pel carrer l’Escau, 08039

Telèfon 606156303 | 645593096

About Mad Dog

This entry was posted in Barcelona, Barcelona Bars and Restaurants, Drink, Eating Out, Fish, Restaurants and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to El Racó del Mariner

  1. A veritable feast of seafood and a perfect coffee to end. I think it must have been great to be out on the docks where the boats are and where the real fishermen eat. My dad used to build fishing boats so I love the idea of eating seafood by the sea.. wonderful.. I have never had paella, not a real one anyway.. I look forward to trying that one day.. c

  2. Eha says:

    How absolutely delightful;!!! And by now you will be over that : shall we say, the tiny bit of over-indulgence . . . love the thought of those fish balls by the bye . . .

  3. Omg! you discovered a gem!-what delicious seafood. It reminds me of the bourdaine episode you sent me where they go to the coast. Your drink choices are surprising. Carajillos were my most amazing discovery in Mexico. I was almost certain that this is a Mexican specialty. And aguardiente is totally colombian as per my days spent passed out on concrete floors not having known what homemade aguardiente can do 🙂 Sounds like you all had a great time. Good company and good food and drink!

  4. One for the list on my next visit MD – I love discovering this type of place. Looks amazing.

  5. I love all these places you discover and so diligently test for us! That fish platter looks fantastic (well, everything does to be honest) and I’m glad you then carried on by going to a wine festival!

  6. ChgoJohn says:

    No paella? Oh, how you all suffered! Glad that you found the strength to soldier on, forcing yourselves to eat Option B. That wine festival was just what you all needed to cleanse the palette.
    I should be so unfortunate. 😉

  7. Amazing lunch…loved those baby fish and anchovies…loved the whole fucking thing to be precise! I have deeply etched memories of hierbas from Ibiza in the early 70’s …playing some sort of game in a bar on the beach which involved me drinking several shots of hierbas whether I won or lost…my last memory was of getting out of the car, as I clearly couldn’t drive, and falling down a small cliff on the edge of which I had stopped the car:)

    • Mad Dog says:

      Thanks Roger – you have to watch out for hierbas and some restaurants do like to plonk the bottle on the table at the end of the meal (sometimes in a block of ice). I’m glad your car stopped in time!

  8. Michelle says:

    Out of rice??? Too funny. Looks like you recovered nicely though.

  9. Pingback: Vi Novell 2015 | Mad Dog TV Dinners

  10. Karen says:

    You certainly couldn’t have asked for fresher fish, that is for sure. The fish platter looked amazing.

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