Last Updated on April 26, 2024 by Christian Heide

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A very important Catalan gastronomic tradition is the so called Calçotada. Especially in the Barcelona region you will find many culinary and social events in the cooler winter months of January to March. It is common to go with your friends or families at least once per season and enjoy the being together.

What is a Calçotada?

The calçot is a type of spring onion from Catalonia. They are grilled over a hot fire, preferably using charcoal and fuelling it with grapevine clippings. This adds a very special flavour to the onion. Then after having wrapped them up in newspaper they are served and eaten with bare hands. One after the other, you peel and dip them in Romesco sauce which is another Catalan speciality. The dip is made out of charred tomatoes and roasted red peppers. They are puréed and thickened with toasted almonds and bread.

Pour wine from a porrón, a traditional glass bottle in a kettle shape, and eat a classic tomato bread (pan con tomate) with it!

Where to go for a Calçotada

Try a typical masia, an old farm house, like Can Cortés or Can Cortada in the outskirts of Barcelona. During the Calçotada season you will need a reservation as the masias are very popular places among local people.

Restaurant Masia Can Cortés, Av. de Can Cortés, 36, 08196 Sant Cugat del Vallès

  • This restaurant is picturesquely located in the Collserola Natural Park, a 45 minutes walk away from the Torre de Collserola, the iconic telecom tower on top of the Tibidabo mountain range. The restaurant and its terraces overlook the valley and you will be able to see the famous mountain of Montserrat with its monastery.

Can Cortada, Av. de l’Estatut de Catalunya, s/n, 08035 Barcelona, Spain

  • This restaurant is easy to be reached by Metro (green line to Valldaura), thus ideally located within the Barcelona city limits.

Did you know…

The Calçotada has its origin as celebration of the harvest of the spring onions and turned thus into a popular tradition.

Other Barcelona activities during the Calçotada season

Learn about Barcelona legends during our two-hours walking tour “Gaudí & Barcelona Legends”. We will make the connection from medieval Catalan history and legends to what inspired architects like Gaudí when designing the residential houses along the magnificent boulevard of Passeig de Gracia. From street pavement to lamp posts – all have a story that we want to tell you!

Try another culinary experience: Our Barcelona History & Food Experience lets you discover the variety of Spanish tapas while getting to know the Gothic Quarter, the old town of Barcelona.

Read about vegetarian restaurants in Barcelona – we have made a selection of 5 top restaurants that we enjoy.