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Bar Paral-Lel Central


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A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

Published by Martha S — 3 years ago

Today, I had a really hectic day at work. Well, not just hectic, it was absolutely terrible. In case you do not know yet, I work as a trainee in one of the English schools in Barcelona. So, this was my fourth day at work, and my mentor got sick, which means that I was responsible for an entire kindergarten class with seventeen kids. Now, try to imagine this mess. (Or maybe it is better if you don't…) Honestly, today was the first day in my life, when I thought that maybe, just maybe, this job is just not for me.

So, why am I writing all this? Because I was so devastated on the way home, that I decided to stop in a first bar that I will see. And luckily, the first one was just next to the metro exit. And what was even better, I saw that they are serving strawberry mojitos, which I love, and what brought a big (although fake) smile on my face, was when I saw the price of this awesome drink. One strawberry mojito at this bar only costs four Euros. I could drink ten of them today, but I have to go back to work tomorrow, so I had just one. But my mood suddenly became much better. So, which is this great bar with awesome strawberry mojitos? Read more below.

When I arrived to Barcelona, I was surprised how there are hundreds of bars on every street in the city, and they are trying to invite you in by having the lowest drink prices, comparing to their neighbours. For example, I saw a bar where you can have two cocktails by your choice for five Euros. I have not tried them out yet, so I cannot say how good they are, but I am planning to find out. (I am also working tomorrow, so, who knows, maybe I will test them very soon…)

A little bit about Paral-Lel Central

First of all, Paral-Lel Central is not just a bar, it is also a restaurant. And from what I saw, when the waitress was taking plates to other guests, their dishes must be super tasty. Maybe I will give it a try at the end of this week, because I am not really in a mood to cook lunch every single day. I rather spend that time exploring the city. Or drinking cocktails.

Secondly, Paral-Lel Central is situated on Avinguda Paral-Lel 90, which is very close to the previously mentioned metro station Paral – Lel (Green line, L3). The next metro station, which is also only a short walking distance away, is Poble Sec, which is also on the Green line L3, but you will have to walk about ten minutes from there to reach the Paral – Lel Central.

In addition, Paral-Lel Central has quite an interesting schedule. On Sundays, it is only open from nine o'clock to twelve o'clock, which is terrible in case you are looking for a nice place to have lunch at. Then, it reopens later in the evening, and it is open until midnight. Then, on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, Paral-Lel Central is open from eight o'clock to three o'clock, and from eight in the evening to midnight. And on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, this place is open from eight o'clock in the morning to one o'clock at night. I am not sure why they are not open later, because this is a very early hour to leave a bar, at least in my opinion.

The interior and the exterior

The first thing that I noticed when I was walking around different streets and avenies in Barcelona is, that every bar there has an enormous amount of chairs outside, which can almost take the whole street. And Paral-Lel Central is not an exception. Usually, people prefer to sit closer to the entranceto those bars, so they are not that exposed to the crowd that is passing by.

A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

What I love about those bars next to the street are the signs, where you can read, what exactly they are offering on that day, and what is even better, some of them also include the price. This way, you do not have to go inside and ask how much something would cost you.

But back to my desire for a good cocktail on a bad day. Since it was quite windy, I have decided to sit inside, even though I normally try to avoid staying indoors when having a drink. And I was surprised that I was the only guest inside. Well, I guess that it was still too early for the crowds to start bar – hopping.

The interior is quite nice, and it has an interesting composition – you will find the bar at the side, which is very unusual. And although the interior might seem big at the first glance, it is actually quite small, and if a group of people decides to come here for a drink, they will most likely have to sit outside. But I was there by myself, and I did not really care about anyone else.

A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

My lovely strawberry mojito

When I took my seat, the waitress was outside, chatting with some guests that she obviously knew, but as soon as she saw that I sat down, she came in right away and asked me what I would like to order, which is a big plus.

And, another positive thing, she spoke English. I do understand a bit of Spanish, and on a good day, I can even speak a few words, but today, I really was not in the mood to try anything. So, I asked her if she speaks English, and she said that only a bit. But honestly, her English was almost perfect.

So, I have ordered a strawberry mojito, and she went to the back side of the bar to get the ingredients. It took quite long for the strawberry mojito to be prepared (well, ten minutes, but for me, that was a long time, as you can imagine), but that was not her fault at all.

    That drink requires a longer preparation process.

But when I finally got it to the table, and made the first sip, I thought that this is the best drink that I have ever had. Not just the taste (which was finger – licking, if you can say that for a drink), also the decoration. I am not sure whether it is supposed to always be like that, but I liked it.

A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

Usually, I finish my drinks really fast, and my excuse is that I do not want my drinks to get warm, but today, I really tried to enjoy and drink it as slow as possible. And I was quite successfull, because it took me almost half an hour. There was an enormous amount of icein the glass, so the drink was cold all the time. I was even waiting that all the ice melted, so I could drink every single drop of the drink.

A place with perfect strawberry mojitos and free tapas

And I was very surprised when the waitress brought me shrimp tapas with my drink, even though I did not order anything. She probably saw the question in my eyes, and she explained that, in this bar, you get free tapas with every order. Oh, well. Another reason to keep coming back to this bar.

After I have finished, the waitress came back to my table and politely asked me if I would like another one. Oh, how I wished that I could say yes. Hell, I would even have ten of them, but then I reminded myself that I have to work again tomorrow, so I had to say no. But hey, maybe I could have another one tomorrow (although I really hope that tomorrow is going to be a better day at work).

Prices

This is one of the least expensive bars in Barcelona that I have walked by. And luckily, it is possible to compare the prices very easily, since most of the bars display their offers outside. So, most of their cocktails cost five Euros or less, and with most of them, you even get free tapas, just as I did with mine! I have heard of the possibility of getting free tapas with the drinks you order, at some bars in Barcelona, and I must say that I was really lucky – I had no idea that the Paral – Lel Central is one of them.

In general, paellas (which are quite popular in Barcelona) cost from five to ten Euros in this bar, and one portion seems to be big enough for a few people!

Conclusion

I have learned the hard way that the word 'expensive' dominates in the city of Barcelona, so I am always happy when I discover a new place where I can eat or drink for a reasonable price. And Paral – Lel Central is one of those perfect places for a night out with a couple of friends, where you can try out different cocktails and not spend all your savings. And wait, did I mention free tapas with every drink? Well, almost every drink. You will definitely not get those free tapas if you order just a glass of water!

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