Barcelona Restaurant Makes Good on its Name

I’m a Spain freak. All of my friends and family members know this. So a very nice surprise awaited me last night at Barcelona Restaurant & Bar: everything on the menu was Spanish. Finally. I’ve patronized the German Village eatery since it opened more than a decade ago and have watched it undergo multiple transformations. Until recently, it didn’t actually serve true Spanish cuisine. It has always been challenging to find Spanish food and wine in Columbus. I’m grateful that Barcelona’s owner Scott Heimlich and executive chef Paul Yow shifted from Mediterranean/American fusion to the warm, sensuous dishes of Iberia. The restaurant’s current menu offers dozens of Spanish red and white wines by the glass, including the lovely and affordable Quo Macabeo/Chardonnay for $5. The “Humus” with grilled flatbread, crunchy vegetables, and smoked paprika oil is an enjoyably colorful nibbler (and an extra plate of veggies costs a mere dollar).Among the Spanish cheese selection are two winners: the creamy Cana de Cabra goat’s milk cheese from Murcia with a hint of quince paste, and the firm Manchego Romero sheep’s milk cheese from La Mancha that’s cured with rosemary and caramelized green olive. Our visit was quick because we had plans to see Actor’s Theatre perform at Schiller Park, but we’ll return for the ever-changing tapas menu, three-course $25 Paella dinner, and the romantic patio. Viva la comida española.

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