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La Monroe (Barcelona) ~ Quality Tapas & Buzzy Vibes in the Artsy Raval Barrio

Last updated on February 17, 2017

This bright and colourful tapas bar in Raval is not only a great place to meet friends for tapas and drinks, but is also an important hub of the local community. 

This is part of an exciting collaboration between myself and Avis InspiresCheck out my full Barcelona guide (with videos) here.

About La Monroe

In Spain, a neighbourhood tapas bar is so much more than just a place to eat. It’s a hub, a sort of meeting point for the local community. And though there are many excellent tapas bars in Raval, La Monroe is one of my favourites.

La Monroe : Filmoteca Ben Holbrook
La Monroe Tapas Bar & Restaurant in La Filmoteca ~ Words and Photos by Ben Holbrook

The Vibe

La Monroe's huge terrace - Ben Holbrook
La Monroe’s huge terrace – perfect for sunset sips and people watching

Housed in the Filmoteca – an important cultural space that houses a cinema and the Film Archive of Catalonia – this large, bustling tapas bar and restaurant is an important meeting point for the residents of Raval. It’s bright and buzzy and attracts a mix of local artsy types and young groups of friends.

Inside La Monroe - Ben Holbrook

The creative decor was designed by Antonio Iglesias and, I assume, reflects the broad ethnic and cultural diversity that Raval is so well-known for.

And unlike many tapas bars in Barcelona there’s plenty of space for large groups – I ate here whilst filming a series of travel videos and there was enough space for the whole film crew to sit around a table and eat.

Bright colours at La Monroe - Ben Holbrook
La Monroe’s funky interior

It’s not really one of Barcelona’s most romantic restaurants – it’s more about socialising with friends and absorbing the vibes of the neighbourhood.

The Food & Drink

Join the crowds that gather on the huge outdoor terrace for a vermouth and a couple of little nibbles or grab a table inside and dine on fresh Mediterranean dishes. 

Tomatina salad at La Monroe - Ben Holbrook
Tomatina salad at La Monroe

Start with classic tapas dishes such as “ensaladia Russia” (Russian salad), which despite the name is actually a Spanish staple, as well as gourmet Spanish olives and a few sliced slithers of A-grade Spanish ham.

Gambas at La Monroe - by Ben Holbrook

Keep it healthy with creative salads such as the “Tomatina” salad with thick-sliced tomatoes, olives and succulent chunks of tuna, as well as hearty sandwiches and burgers. The grilled gambas (prawns) are among the best I’ve ever had in Barcelona.

Don’t miss the house special “Papitas”, a hearty take on Spain’s famous spicy patatas bravas, and the “Supernachoman”, which is satiating stack of gooey nachos topped with spicy pico de gallo, beans, sour cream, cheddar cheese, jalapeños and chunky guacamole.

In a Nutshell

La Monroe is an idyllic spot for everything from an early morning coffee to a lazy lunch in the sun or an indulgent dinner. Stay after dark for cocktails to see it at its best. This is one of my go-to bars in Raval. 

This is part of a collaboration between myself and Avis Inspirescheck out the full guide here. More about La Monroe here.

Address: Plaça de Salvador Seguí, 1, 08001 Barcelona
Nearest Metro: Liceu (Green line)
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