Usual price for this areaLa Taperia - (El Nacional), Barcelona
Finding myself tired, worn-out, and in Barcelona, I decided that it was high time for dinner and after hearing reports of a one roof multi-restaurant bonanza, I just had to go. Located in the heart of the city, the fancy building boasts four restaurants and four bars to coax tourists and locals alike for the title of the city’s best hangout spot.
Upon entering the establishment, you’re hit with the dulcet tones of the decor and the vibrant hustle and bustle of people. Probably. It was a Sunday and rather empty, plus it was only half-way through our meal when they decided to dim the house lights for a proper ambience.
Up to this point, I had never had tapas before. I just couldn’t wrap my head around the point of portions upon portions of tiny food for a main meal – why not just combine a few plates into one normal sized meal? I suppose there’s a social side to this, but I’ll be damned if I actually want to talk to someone incessantly while nibbling and ordering between sentences. So, off we went to La Taperia for me to understand – when in Rome and all that.
We get ushered to one of the many empty tables and proceed to point at all manner of shit. Soon enough, they had shuffled over our possibly microwaved dishes and push the plates around the place as if they couldn’t give a toss they were scratching the wooden table.
The scrambled egg dish was clearly made last year and had been sat under a malfunctioning heat lamp since its creation – I would rather have been eating a synthetic egg powdered sponge. The potatoes were a Russian Roulette of surprises. Some were undercooked and crunchy, like an okay apple in a shit orchard, some were burned as if it had passed through the sun. Individual temperatures for each piece was art in the way that none of them matched. The only nice thing about the dishes we ordered was the shop-bought bread.
After a while, a waitress slid some more dishes over and tried to slink off before we informed her that we hadn’t ordered them (although we were still waiting on a few more). She quizzed us over our claim and then shrugged her shoulders and snatched them back from the table with her claws. I have never seen someone so beyond their job and someone so visibly waiting for it to all end before. I could’ve murdered her entire family and everyone she had ever loved in front of her and she still wouldn’t have given a shite. All the staff, bar one, were just inept robots.
What seemed a long decade later, our final dish arrived (as they forgot the order). By this point, we had filled up on bread and no longer wanted our tuna tapas. I really wish I could say that we didn’t eat the tuna, settled the bill, and lived happily-ever-after, but alas. It tasted like a mouldy ocean. I very much enjoy fish, but after a single piece I wanted to be eaten alive by wolves so that I’d never have to experience anything like that ever again. The tuna when cut in half was bicoloured – the dullest of grey and the saddest of pink, but coloured vertically from left to right.
We ordered the bill quick sharp after the tuna incident. Ten minutes had struggled along before they threw the bill at us. One look showed that they had charged us twice for the shit tuna dish which again was ten minutes later then everything else. The knuckle-dragging staff all congregated around the payment terminal, grunting, huffing, prodding and punching the touchscreen to try and sort our order out, all the while I was trying not die from being subjected to this complete lack of professionalism.
I could almost let the service mistakes slide if the restaurant was teeming with people, but as it was empty, there is and was no excuse for such a shit bunch of people without a care working in a service job. The food was complete dog shit, too.