Occasion: Great for a casual seafood lunch or dinner
Neighborhood: La Barceloneta
Location: Almirall Aixada, 23, 08003, Barcelona
Reservations: Book online or call +34 932 215 455
Hours: Tues – Sat: 1 pm – 4pm and 8 pm – 11:30 pm, Sun: 1 pm – 4pm, Mon: Closed
Prices: Mid-range (around €40 for dinner and wine)
Wi-fi password: estoellademar23
I brought my parents to Can Majo after hearing about it from friends and reading positive reviews in travel guides. “This restaurant is the most established seafood venue located in Barceloneta, the Ciutat Vella barrio known for its fish restaurants,” according to Condé Nast Traveller, the UK‘s leading travel magazine. I wanted to explore Barcelona‘s beautiful seafront, but online reviews of overpriced tourist trap restaurants in Barceloneta made me hesitant to dine in the area. With evidence that Can Majo was my safest bet, I decided to give the restaurant, and the area as a whole, a try.
When I first walked into the restaurant, I was underwhelmed by the passé decor. Drab wood floors and pastel blue walls surround the space, clashing with the red-cushioned chairs. I was also surprised to see only a few other customers eating here, which is usually a bad sign. Granted, the cold weather that night prevented people from coming to dine at the restaurant’s gorgeous patio, which is situated in clear view of the beach.
Despite the dated decor, the traditional Spanish seafood cuisine and friendly service definitely met my standards. At the beginning of the meal, we were brought a bowl of olives, cornichon, and pickled onions, as well as the typical Catalan bread starter called “pan con tomate.” We then got the goat cheese salad and the tuna and tomato salad (a special of the day) for our first courses. The goat cheese appetizer – which comes with lightly caramelized goat cheese, pine nuts, pomegranate seeds, candied walnuts, and baby spinach – was the perfect salad. The other dish, consisting of marinated tuna (which tasted like large pieces of canned tuna) on various types of tomatoes, was also good but was not my favorite. For our main courses, my mom got the grilled turbot fish and my dad and I shared the house paella. I would undoubtedly order the paella again and recommend it to anyone who comes. Can Majo executes the classic Spanish rice dish exquisitely. The tasty, braised, saffron-seasoned rice mixed with fresh calamari, shrimp, and crayfish, made it a truly mouthwatering and unforgettable meal.
Our meal ended up costing €120 for wine and more than enough delicious food for three hungry people. I certainly plan on coming back to the restaurant when the weather is warmer to enjoy its finger-licking paella on the seaside patio. The food blog “The Little Loaf” reflects, “Was [Can Majo] the best seafood and paella in Barcelona? There are so many places to eat in this amazing city that I’m not sure I could even begin to answer that question without taking up residence for several years (and kissing goodbye to my wallet and waistline). But for beautifully cooked dishes using simple, fresh ingredients in an incredibly romantic setting, it’s certainly a top contender.”