Abac

When we were deciding on which hotel to stay in Barcelona we went back and forth several times.  Last time I was here we stayed at the Majestic.  Well located but didn’t love it.  Too frenetic.  We were going to stay at the Abac Hotel where there are only 15 rooms but it is a bit far from everything that you want to walk to every day.  So in the end we chose Ohla Hotel.  The location is prime.  The restaurant downstairs is pretty good and we had lunch there on our first day here.  The hotel is just ok.  Have had a few issues and there attention to detail is seriously lacking.   I would not recommend this hotel unfortunately.  For instance I had it down that we had a reservation at Abac at 930 and called the concierge to confirm and he told me 830.  The place doesn’t even open until 830 so we were the first ones there.  The wait staff was still speaking with the chef when we arrived.

outsideThe good news is we had dinner at Abac.  This photo of where we dined does not do it justice.  The backyard is absolutely beautiful.  It was so nice to be outside yet hear the hum of the city in the background.

buildingThis is the building behind us.  Did not get to see the rooms but it is a fifteen minute cab ride from our hotel and as I said we have walked freely into the areas we want without taking cabs so there is the trade-off.

pinacoladaThere are two tasting menus available and an a la carte menu too.  We went with the a la carte after having eaten a 21 course meal the night before.  They start you off with three small appetizers.  The first one is a bit of a show.  They pour liquid into a mixture and smoke comes rising out and through a constant whisking of the mixture out comes this pina colada cream.  I am not a huge fan of pina colada so it just was not my thing.  Reminds me of parties in high school along with frozen strawberry dacquiris and bad suntan lotion.

coldfoiegrasThis was quite good and clever.  A very delicate cracker is set over a glass filled with a warm rich broth.  Frozen foie gras is shaved over the top after they set this in front of you.  You take a bite of the cracker with the foie gras and sip the broth.

thirdappThe last treat from the kitchen was also quite good.   Small balls of different liquids that were creamy and gushing with a dollop of something that I’d call frozen shrimp ice cream.

meshrimpI had a cooked prawn salad with greens and tomatoes.  Simple elegant salad.  More frozen shrimp ice cream on this plate.

fredshrimpFred went with three styles of prawn.  The first plate was similar to mine without the greens.

shrimp2As I said it was three styles of prawn so they bring the second one out after you finish the first.  Interesting way to serve it.  I get it because they want to serve it just as it has been plated but I would have liked to see everything come out at once.  This is a prawn with small pieces of eggplant poached in miso.

shrimp3The last prawn was set in a roasted eggplant soup with an Iberian pork tail and a deboned spare rib meat with curry bread.

Then we did something here that we should not have done.   Every night we basically drink one bottle of wine and sometimes if we are feeling it we will start with a drink.  Fred generally has a glass of local sparkling wine and I go with a Campari on the rocks with a piece of orange.  Light stuff.  On this night we broke the rule and ordered a second bottle of wine.  We only drank half of it but I am quite sure we will not be doing that again.  Between the rich food, the wine and the whole thing we were a bit hurting the next day.

fishMain courses arrived.  Roasted sea bass with artichokes, oysters sitting in a fish stock infused with butter.  Delicious.

porkI had two styles of pork.  It was like eating two entrees.  The first was a roasted pork shoulder that had been pulled and put into a rectangle with a crispy piece of skin on top.  On the side were spicy vegetables.  This was amazing.  It was just the right amount too and then came out the second pork.

pork2Inside that small glossy bun was dry apricot and Kimchee pancetta with a Thai flavoring.  Included was a piece of pork tail, deboned sparerib meat and a crispy piece of skin.  I preferred dish number one.

cheeseplateThe cheese cart came over and we had them choose some for us.  All delicious.

treatsLast of course is the dessert tray.  Don’t recall much from this to be honest.

lipstiThis was also served and when I saw the pictures the next day I recalled it was a lipstick but the lipstick was a frozen fruit sorbet.  At this point we literally stumbled into a cab and went back to the hotel.