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Velódromo, Barcelona

213 Carrer Muntaner
Spain 08036
Tel: 34 93 430 6022's insider take:

Art Deco is thin on the ground in Barcelona, which makes this wonderful café all the more special. The original Velodrómo was the preferred hangout of the city's glitterati from 1933 until its abrupt closure in 2000, when the founding owner's son retired. Chef Carles Abellán of ComerÁ 24 fame has reopened it but (thankfully) has done little to the decor. The pistachio green walls, leather banquettes, molded ceiling, and carved friezes recall a time when intellectuals gathered to drink strong coffee and discuss the latest literary happenings. Abellán has extended the menu to include all sorts of tapas geared for a weekend of partying (fresh oysters, little plates of olives and conserved fish), hearty hangover breakfasts (butifarra sausage with white beans, or tripe with chickpeas and chorizo), and bistro dishes of grilled fish and steak. At lunchtime, you'll find office workers from the Eixample, while late nights cater to a noisy club crowd tucking into sustaining plates of patatas bravas.—Suzanne Wales

Open daily 6 am to 3 am.

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