A good friend and I ambled into Irati last September and ate and ate and ate.....
Recently I returned with my partner and ate and ate and ate....
The tapas are so good that I don't know how people manage to get past them to eat in the restaurant section!
A great place to eat and eat and eat and then visit the evening market in the nearby square where you can buy the best honey and cheese (possibly the smelliest cheese I've ever smelt but great tasting!).
Favorite Dish Every single tapa.....
When my friend demanded that we go to Irati for steak, I was a bit skeptical. I hadn't even seen a steak since I had arrived in Spain. A Basque steak? Could it be that good? Especially at what looked to be nothing more than a pintxos bar off Las Ramblas? Nevertheless, I trusted him, and I am so glad I did. Other than shawarma, chorizo, and jamon, my meat intake had been regretabbly scarce by my American standards in europe. I was kinda getting th craving for some substantial, non-sausage, un-cured protein, and Irati sure did cure it. This was an enormous steak, cooked perfectly. I don't know what it was cooked in, but it was so sweet and delicious, I ate the whole thing despite the free plates of chorizo, bread, and potatoes that the meal began with. Skip the lettuce wedge salad and go straight to the steak. It's the one served with fois and a swish of pureed potatoes, and it will fill you up for the rest of the night.
Irati is small, and if you want more than the pintxos (Basque tapas) served in front, head to the back where you will find the quaint dining room. The service was very good, and they spoke English as well, an added bonus for all American carnivores.
Favorite Dish Steak with fois and potatoes
IRATI is tipical Bascian (El Pais Basco - part of Espana, they speak EUSKERA language there) ethnical restaurant near Ramblas (if you are going up to Placa Catalunya turn right at street mosaic made by Joan Miro, toward church Santa Maria del Pi - between those two). It is custom to eat standing on your feet. There are lots of different sandwiches with toothpick on each one. You get plate and start trying all these interesting colorful small sandwiches. They all taste different and all of them are great. People usually drink SIDRA (another name Segardo) also tipical bascian beverage. When you finish they count toothpics (each toothpick means one sandwich - price is 1,20 € per one) and you pay. IT IS OPENED EVERY DAY.
Favorite Dish Small sandwich with hot spicy bascian sausages. It is made in front of you and allways fresh and hot.
This is a nice Basque bar close to the Ramblas (near Plaza del Pino) where they will offer you tapas (small portions of Spanish delicatessen) at 1.50 euros per unit. You can choose between Spanish jamon, La Mancha cheese, calamari, Russian salad, etc., presented on a piece of bread is an aesthetic way.
Further inside the bar there is a restaurant “a la carte”, but too expensive (anyway, Basque cuisine is very selected and not cheap). Better to try only tapas with some Bilbao wine which is served by glass for about 2 euros.
You can find cheaper tapas in Basque style in the street Moncada, next door to the Museo Picasso.
Favorite Dish Tapas vascas
I happened upon this place while wandering around the streets of the ravel area. When I went into the narrow bar, there were people crowded around , eating typical Basque tapas and drinking local beer . I didn't see a menu. but trays of tapas were stacked up all along the bar. It turns out you just ask for a plate and help yourself. Your bill is added up by counting the toothpicks left on your plate. (when I was there , tapas were 1 euro each). A customer next to me joked that if she found something she didn't care for, she would put her toothpick on the plate next to hers! I didn't have that problem, since I liked everything I tried.
Good food and friendly atmosphere. Great if you just want a snack, and I understand there is a full service restaurant the back, but I found that out afterwards.