Where to Find the Best Lebanese Food in Barcelona
I’ve been eating my way through Europe for a few years now, and I would estimate that 65% of my diet is comprised of foods hailing from Lebanon, or the Middle East in general.
Why do I prefer Lebanese food while traveling? It’s light and easy to digest (which helps with jetlag), it’s usually unintentionally vegan and it’s a fantastic cuisine for shared dining.
There is Lebanese food all over Barcelona. From inexpensive kebab joints to high-end Arabic dining, you’re sure to find your go-to within walking distance at all times. Let’s see…
Aladdin Restaurante Arabe in Barcelona
Aladdin is one of the splurge-worthy Lebanese spots in Barcelona. It’s the closest one in proximity to the Sagrada Familia in the center, surrounded by ample tourist trap eateries and guided walking tours.
Aladdin is a full on escape from Spain into an ancient Arabic souk complete with draped ceilings and lanterns. It’s an exquisite space, and thankfully the food is authentic as well.
A lot of people stumble across Aladdin because it is one of the only restaurants in the area that don’t close for siesta every afternoon. It is also one of few spots in Barcelona offering traditional shish for just €12 per rig.
This is my favorite spot for Lebanese falafel; meat eaters love the lamb and chicken dishes. Accompany your preference with sides of hummus, mutabal, pita, tabbouleh, fattoush and grilled peppers. A feast your won’t forget.
No authentic Lebanese dining experience is complete without mint tea after the meal. Say yes when your server offers it.
OPENING HOURS: Monday to Sunday – 11am to 1am
Address: Av. de Gaudí, 50, 08025 Barcelona, Spain
METRO STATION: Sant Pau | Dos de Maig
Mazah in Barcelona
Moving into Barcelona’s Old Town we come to another authentic Lebanese spot in the city. This area is equally as filled with tourist traps and free guided walking tours; I would estimate there to be over fifty different cuisines to eat in this area alone.
Mazah is my number one for Lebanese food in Barcelona. I was taken here by a local friend a few years ago and have been a loyal supporter ever since.
I hope you’ll start with their hummus tasting plate. It comes with small portions of different forms of hummus and salads, just to wet your palette before the main event.
Ordering is done using an iPad. This makes service run smoother between customers and the kitchen, preventing any miscommunication due to language barriers. You’ll find more and more restaurants in Europe adopting this method these days.
Dining at Mazah is not cheap. Their prices are a reflection of the quality and experience you are getting, and not of Lebanese food in general. There are other more affordable options around the city.
OPENING HOURS: Wednesday to Monday – 1:30pm to 12am
Address: Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 618, 08007 Barcelona, Spain
METRO STATION: Catalunya
IAKNI in Barcelona
If we head slightly south we come to one of those more affordable spots. IAKNI is in Poble Sec, an area still considered to be up and coming, & as a result eating out here costs considerably less.
IAKNI is much smaller that the other Lebanese restaurants we have looked at. This one is for romantic or intimate dining where you’ll share plates between two or three people, not with big groups. Their outdoor seating is a lovely addition.
IAKNI also has a full wine menu, which is a rarity with Arabic restaurants often due to religious reasons.
While you can dine full tapas style here, focusing on small plates only, I do recommend their main meals. Consider keeping the small plates as starters and leaving room for their shawarma and plated mains next.
After dinner you’re in prime location for a drink at any of the best budget bars in Barcelona — Poble Sec is littered with them.
OPENING HOURS: Tuesday to Saturday – 1pm to 4pm // 7:30pm to 11pm
Address: Carrer de Vilamarí, 3, 08015 Barcelona, Spain
METRO STATION: Rocafort
Petra in Barcelona
When I can’t get a table at Mazah, I stroll through the Old Town and into the next best: Petra.
Petra is a fusion kitchen. It’s less traditional and authentic to what you were probably expecting, but I love what they do with the food & you are guaranteed to be impressed yourself. I believe they draw inspiration from Lebanese, Cuban and Mediterranean cuisines.
The staff will walk you through the menu and help you find something that suits both your taste and dietary restrictions. During lunch time there is a €12.50 set menu that is created daily by the chef.
Another spot that puts you in prime proximity to el Raval’s best bars and nightlife after your meal.
OPENING HOURS: Monday to Sunday – 1pm to 11:45pm
Address: Carrer d’Astúries, 53, 08012 Barcelona, Spain
METRO STATION: Fontana
Arabia Café-Restaurante in Barcelona
Platters, platters and more platters. Arabia Cafe is the go-to for shared Arabic dining while in Barcelona; a fabulous spot for large families or trading groups who need restaurants to accommodate their large parties.
Arabia Cafe’s menu is predominantly Lebanese, but there are a few items from other parts of the Middle East and Africa available as well. They even do Moroccan couscous and tajine.
If the mint tea doesn’t do it for you, then their wine list probably will. One thing you should know is that they do permit shisha to be smoked inside of the restaurant, which isn’t great for children to be exposed to. Use your discretion; lunch time is far less smokey than dinner.