I’ll confess, I’ve walked by En Aparté numerous times without being tempted to go inside. Something about unappealing signage and hearing lots of English being spoken by the people sitting outside. And those aluminum chairs that are fine to sit on but make an awful racket as they scrape back and forth across the pavement. What made me reconsider was an offhand mention by someone I know that she was escaping her apartment and going to work at En Aparté.
I returned with my laptop planning on getting some work done with a coffee and then trying the menu del dia.
It’s a larger space then what it appears to be from the outside. With worn wooden chairs and tables gleaming in the sunlight that pours in through the large windows. I choose a small table in the back. The coffee comes in thick, tall coffee cups, black on the outside. Up high on a shelf, a collection of antique coffee hand-mills.
As we get closer to lunch time, En Aparté fills up with people wanting the 12.50€ menu del dia. The influx of people, high ceilings and hard surfaces combined make for a noisy meal. It feels like I am eating in a train station, I put away my work and pick out bits of conversation instead.
Food is ordered from wooden blackboards which are brought tableside. I have an artichoke gratin served in a clay dish. Followed by a large wedge of tuna and pepper quiche which has been warmed up in the microwave with a green side salad. The coffee I ordered earlier gets added to the menu del dia.
I don’t shun dairy but neither do I seek it out. The milk, cream, and cheese laden food leave me quite full so I opt out of dessert.
I get my work done, I am satiated and it only costs me 12.50€. (A 10% surcharge is levied on outside tables.) It’s a pleasant French style lunch with Barcelona sun and smiles swapped for the associated French dourness.