Palau de la Música Catalana and Tapas

Childrens choir, practicing

The  tickets for the guided tour of the Palau de la Música were quite expensive, but they’re the only way in, and the guide books all put it at or near the top of the list of must-see places in Barcelona, so we went.  Very glad we did.  Fantastic building, with a great story, and the children’s choir happened to be practicing while we were there, and they were also great.  This building is one of those quintisentially turn-of-the-century grand gesture buildings that aren’t often made any more, it seems.  The product of determination and donations, it is still privately held by the choral society that originally commissioned it.  It is in an old corner of town, with no grand aspect, because that’s where the amateur singers who joined the original choir lived.  An amazing work of brick, tile, steel and (most importantly) glass, it has natural light during the day and really great acoustics.  Just a lovely place to be in.  More photos in the galery, below, if I can make that work again.

We went back to the apartment for a midday snack, intending to have a proper lunch of Tapas at La Vinya del Senyor, a recommendation from Cath’s chow-hound contacts.  Unfortunately my control of the Navigatrix (garmin) was a bit rusty, and we went far out of our way, in search of the Palau Güell (a Gaudi building), so we were hot and bothered by the time we got there, at dusk.  Luckily for us, it was a stand-out hands-down winner of a place, even if we had to sit on the edge of a pot plant until there was room for us at the bar.  After two rounds of tapas and some cava, and a very nice bottle of wine, we decided to push our luck by also trying the other two recommended tapas bars.  While pleasant enough, neither really lived up to the level of La Vinya del Seynor, although the squid-ink pasta dish at Tora was really very good.  Just a shame that we had eaten too much by then to really enjoy it.  Clearly tapas-bar-crawls is a learned skill that we will need to practice.