Photo by Patricia Esteve
Les Corts has never had much going on when it comes to eating out. There’s a perfectly good but somewhat soulless food court at L’Illa shopping mall, and La Tertulia, a cosy bistro tucked away on the quietest plaça in town: Plaça de la Carmen. Now, happily for shoppers, there’s Fragments Café.
Fragments is a play on words. To translate, it’s a place split into four quite distinct spaces. Two terraces, one on one of Barcelona’s prettiest places with a country-style church and pastel-coloured townhouses; the other out back in a private garden, a colmado (deli) style tapas bar with high tables and tiled floors and a sleek restaurant in the middle.
The food is also a mix of eating concepts, all a cut above the norm. Tapas at the bar ranges from tender chunks of smoky salmon and local anchovies with onion confit, to huge wheels of parmesan served drizzled with balsamic vinegar, and Italian style sweet and hot round red peppers stuffed with spiced tuna paste or goat’s cheese. And of course patatas braves, which, like every other tapas bar worth its salt, is the house special. The restaurant meanwhile offers sturdier fare of revueltos (scrambled eggs) with ceps and foie, pasta with truffles, juicy burgers and steaks cooked on a hot stone and cherry crumble to finish.
Much of the wine is available by the glass with a weekly line-up showcasing the variety of Spanish regions; a meaty red from Montsant, a fresh and lively white from Rioja, delicate sweet wine from the Empordà. There’s also the darkly herbal Yzaguirre vermut, perfect for getting your head together while the Christmas shoppers seethe through L’Illa, which is just minutes away.
And so this self-described ‘pequeña joya’ of the neighbourhood achieves what it sets out to be: a class act in a neighbourhood that needed a reason to visit it.