Lasarte Restaurante (Barcelona)

Location: Barcelona, Spain
Address: Carrer de Mallorca, 259 
Type of Meal: Dinner

Nestled in the Passaig de Garcia (Torontonians think of Yorkville but larger and more posh) the restaurant is decorated with a white, clean, modern interior. The chairs were uber comfortable; even though our dinner lasted almost 3 hours I didn't feel any stiffness.

Lasarte gifted me with one of the best meals of my life!  Reservations are required as they have very limited seating - I believe only 16 people. And their service is impeccable with purse stools, serves simultaneously clearing plates and a fresh napkin before desserts are served.    

Our course, the food is the most important. Their dishes are works of art. Every course is set upon different serving trays to accentuate its presentation and contrast colours as necessary. With an 11-course tasting menu there was much artwork to behold.

First, various pre-dinner courses compliments of the chef including a platter of five hors d'oeuvres:
  • Rich and flavourful coconut ice cream topped with crunchy salty kernels which complimented the sweetness
  • Melt in your mouth warm croquette of cheese that were heavenly after the cold ice cream
  • Large green olive stuffed with a grapefruit segment - surprisingly tasty for someone who doesn't like olives; I'd like to think of it as a combination similar to the Italian cantaloupe and prosciutto
  • Piece of local melon with a petal of a flower to add a floral note the melon's sweetness
  • Small pack of roasted nuts covered with curry and honey that went well with our crisp white wine
Next, a "lasagna" of smoked foie gras, green apple and eel with a delicate candied brulee green apple topping. When the waiter was breaking down the dish I had doubts note particularly a fan of foie gras and with eel? However, the combination of the velvety foie gras, sweet green apple and seared eel actually complimented quite well. It wasn't my favourite but I didn't dislike it.

Foie gras, green apple and eel lasagna (1)

Granular cubes of cucumbers with raspberry foam topped with a fresh small oyster. An outstanding dish, the raspberry foam was a great palette cleanser and the micro cubes of cucumbers added such an interesting texture.  The oyster was clean and tasted great with the foam mixture. Lasarte should add it to their menu and charge for it!

Oyster with raspberry foam and cucumbers (2)

Even the bread being offered was extraordinary.  We both opted for the brioche with American bacon.  Yes, it's as amazing as it sounds. A butter soft brioche bun with speckles of bacon throughout to add to its rich flavour.

After all those amuse bouche dishes we knew we were going to have a mind blowing meal. 

Red tuna tartare with curd cucumber - finely chopped tuna topped with a layer of cucumber gelee and another layer of salmon roe.  The smooth tuna tartare is full of flavour and toned down slightly by the cucumber gelee, but as you chew the briny salmon roe just pop in the mouth. As if this wasn't enough, the dish is accompanied with crisp crackers each topped with four dried mini prawns.  Definitely the best tuna tartare I've ever eaten.

Smoked oyster on the grill, steamed spinach with sesame and crispy tubers - brought out in a domed dish, the top is lifted in front of you so the smoke actually wafts into your face before eating.  The scent is intoxicatingly powerful so that patrons at other tables can even smell it.  Despite the impressive entrance it wasn't my favourite dish, but then I've never been a huge fan of oysters.

Vegetable leaves salad, herbs, sprouts and petals with lettuce cream and lobster - if food could be art, this dish would be a masterpiece.  When placed in front of me I was memorized by its many components and trying its combinations was even better.  All the ingredients are set upon a shallow tomato consommé gelee that compliments the many dollops of sauces and leaves of herbs, sprouts and petals.  There was a very small cube of lobster that was perfectly cooked, I just wished there was more!  One of the stand out dishes of the tasting menu in my opinion.

Vegetable leaves salad, herbs, sprouts and petals with lettuce cream & lobster (3)

Tempered beef steak slices on foie gras curd, iodized salad and mustard ice cream - the mustard ice cream went very well with the slices of beef, which was almost a carpaccio style.  A good dish but not as spectacular, in my opinion, as the rest.

Prawn, royale of sea urchins, caviar of goat's burned milk and almond - I was expecting this to be one of my favourite dishes but surprisingly it was not.  The prawn was cooked perfectly but I found the accompanying items didn't add much to it.  Something about the dish, perhaps the goat's burned milk, made it overly smoky and slightly bitter.

Prawn, royale of sea urchins, caviar of goat's burned milk and almond (4)

Farmhouse egg with beetroot and liquidised herb salad, Basque "cocido" carpaccio and smoked cheese - I overheard from another table that the egg was cooked for an hour to get it to achieve this dish's consistency.  This is certainly no normal egg!  Upon cutting into it the yolk runs out in a molten state - not liquid like a poached egg and not cooked through like a soft boiled.  A great flavourful dish, I only wish sticks of brioche could accompany the dish so I had something to dip into it!

Low-temperature cooked sea bass on a bed of bacon and parmesan cream, goose barnacles and cauliflower couscous - in case you're wondering what are goose barnacles they have nothing to do with the fowl and actually grow in the ocean.  The fish was cooked well a tasty but not memorable dish.

Sea bass on bacon & parmesan cream, goose barnacles and cauliflower couscous (5)

Roast pigeon rested on a creamy stew of durum wheat, touch of truffled potato and spicy sauce - the pigeon was cooked perfectly with its crisp skin and medium rare finish.  I was so glad there was finally a meaty rich dish to contrast everything else. Although by this time I was stuffed I wished there was more.  I couldn't get enough of the meaty pigeon, hearty durum wheat and silky potatoes!  My only wonder was where was the spicy sauce?  I actually found the sauce more sweet than spicy.

Roast pigeon with durum wheat, tuffled potato and spicy sauce (6)

Lemon peel ice cream, vanilla iced drink with citrus and mint tea - after such heavy dishes this was such a good dessert to start with.  The ice cream floats upon a dish of vanilla, citrus and mint liquid and was so refreshing and cleansing for the next dessert dish.

French toast with frozen coffee crème and plum compote - after eating this dessert you may have thought you went to heaven.  The French toast must have been sitting in a cream egg mixture for a lengthy time.  Imagine a piece of creamy bread pudding dipped in egg and then seared until there's a brulee crust on it.  The warm French toast was not sweet and instead the frozen coffee crème gave it a lovely contrasting cold, sweet taste.  I absolutely loved the dish!

French toast with frozen coffee crème and plum compote (7)

Petit fours - to finish the night a tower of petit fours were presented consisting of mango mouse on sponge cake, a square dark chocolate truffle topped with gold flakes, rich vanilla butter pound cake and a Catalan white chocolate gelatin with honey which tastes almost like an egg panna cotta with syrup. The latter was a treat to be introduced to and I'd love to have it again.

If you're ever in Barcelona and have 3 hours and 288€ to spare (includes tasting menu for 2 and bottle of wine) you have to try Lasarte. The experience is amazing and memorable.

Overall mark - 9.5 out of 10.  Why didn't this get perfect if I loved it so much? Since I'm not a huge fan of oysters, I wish there was more variety in the tasting menu (3 of the dishes showcased oysters).  That would have made it perfect for me.

Gastro World's Grading System
  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!
Photo Sources:
  1. Foie gras, green apple and eel. The Wandering Epicures (
  2. Oyster with raspberry foam and cucumbers. Trip Advisor (
  3. Vegetable leaves salad, herbs, sprouts and petals with lettuce cream & lobster.  Black Caviar (
  4. Prawn, royale of sea urchins, caviar of goat's burned milk and almond.  Trip Advisor (
  5. Sea bass on bacon & parmesan cream, goose barnacles and cauliflower couscous. Black Caviar (
  6. Roast pigeon with durum wheat, tuffled potato and spicy sauce. The Wandering Epicures (
  7. French toast with frozen coffee creme and plum compote. Black Caviar (