Restaurant Montiel (Barcelona)

Location: Barcelona, Spain
Address: C/ Flassaders, 19
Type of Meal: Dinner

If you didn't realize, Spaniards tend to eat dinner later than North Americans - most restaurants don't serve dinner until 8:30pm.  Being Canadians, we were the first people at the restaurant.  But, were quickly joined by more tourists, thanks to Trip Advisor, where I discovered this establishment.

On Trip Advisor, reviewers suggest asking for a table downstairs.  We were sat upstairs and didn't see any problems.  There was an air conditioning unit and we found it more secluded as you didn't constantly have the door opening and closing.  The decor is warm and well-lit with small wooden tables and chairs.

After ordering, our waiter presented us with a dish of tapas. I believe this was free as can't recall there being a "cover charge" like many restaurants in Barcelona.  The tapas consisted of pickled Spanish green peppers, mild Glossette sized green olives, a rich olive oil with sugar cube portions of bread to dip and some wedges of sausage. 

Montiel does pork right.  In North America pork isn't a prevalent meat, but it is very much so in Spain.  Our appetizer of cured Iberian ham was some of the best charcuterie I've tasted  - paper thin sheets of briny ham that wasn't too dry.  It had just the right amount of fat that melted in your mouth and coats your tongue with the most heavenly taste.  I especially liked that it wasn't overly salty or waxy like some charcuteries often turn out. 

My husband also got pork for his main.  I had read Catalan cuisine includes great suckling pig so he ordered the "suckling pig service on the table with seasonal accompaniment".  What we received was a leg of fall off the bone pork capped with a crispy exterior and sprinkling of sea salt and pink pepper (?).  The skin was extremely delicate, had an excellent crackling texture and appears to be seasoned with a sugary topping so that once roasted the skin took on a slightly sweet brulee coating.  The waiter explained that the pork was so tender as it was made from a 2-month old piglet and slow roasted for 8 hours.

By "accompaniment" the dish included a handful of undressed spring mix salad (essentially the type you find in a bag in the supermarket). This was a bit disappointing as the dish was so heavy it needed more greenery, preferably with vinaigrette to cut through the fattiness of the pork.

Suckling pig (1) 

I had the "pan seared duck with wild mushrooms creamy rice" as I love duck and don't cook it at home. The duck breast was cooked to medium and the skin was well rendered so it became very crispy.  The meat itself could have been flavoured more as it didn't come with any sauce so perhaps a light marinade or brining would have helped. Nevertheless, the duck went well with the "mushroom creamy rice" which tasted like a brown rice risotto (sans butter) with earthy mushrooms that had a crunch to it.  If you've ever had Chinese black fungus, the mushrooms almost had that texture.

Pan seared duck with wild mushrooms creamy rice (2)

The restaurant caters to tourists as all waiters spoke excellent English and the menus were printed in English.  The service was great and at the end of the night our waiter gave us a hand shake before leaving!

If you're looking for an affordable delicious meal go to Restaurant Montiel.  Our bill came to approximately 95€ with a large bottle of water (no tap water here), glass of wine, 2 beers and a double espresso.

Overall mark - 8 out of 10

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!
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Photo Sources:

      1. and 2.  Monkey see, Monkey feast!