A Classic Gin Joint in Barcelona

Photo: N. Cook

Barcelona seems to have a special affinity for gin.  When one walks into any watering hole in the city, the liquor most represented behind the bar will undoubtedly be gin.  It’s no surprise since a gin cocktail of any sort helps beat back the balmy heat of Barcelona.  And if a martini is your gin cocktail of choice, your Correspondent recommends Dry Martini, a gin joint on a dark street a few blocks north of Plaça de Catalunya.

Upon entering Dry Martini, it seems as though one has just stepped into one of the classic bars of yesteryear, such as the American Bar at the Savoy or the Connaught Hotel Bar.  The barmen are dressed in white jackets and black ties.  The walls are decorated with dark wood, mirrors and a library of vintage gin and vermouth bottles.  The ceiling is low and the lights are dim.

When taking one’s place at the bar, one’s eyes are drawn to the mirror behind the cash register (an ornate antique contraption) where the recipe for a proper dry martini, listing the portions of each ingredient, is spelled out.

The service here is tops.  The barmen at Dry Martini reminded your Correspondent of Alessandro, the head barman at Duke’s Hotel in London, home of the Vesper Martini, with their silver hair and perfect service that speaks to a lifetime spent behind a bar.

If there was one thing off about the ambience, it is that the music is not appropriate for the setting.  It doesn’t distract enough for your Correspondent give a bad review of the bar (it is a spectacular bar that is worth a visit), but they could do a better job a selecting their playlist.

Dry Martini ticks all the required boxes for a spectacular cocktail bar: atmosphere, service and expertly made cocktails.  When in Barcelona and in need of a martini, there’s no better place than Dry Martini.

Sit at the bar to get a front row seat to watch these professionals make a perfect martini.

Dry Martini
Carrer d’Aribau, 162
08036 Barcelona
ph: +34 932 17 50 80

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Correspondent:Nick Cook

Originally from the Midwest, Nick has spent the last decade living in Washington, DC, Kiribati, Sao Paulo and London. Wherever he goes, Nick enjoys starting a meal with a wheated bourbon and finishing it with a tawny port. Nick is currently based in London with his Omahanian wife where he spends his weekdays lawyering and his weekends searching wineshops for malbecs to wash down his favorite cheeses from Neil's Yard Dairy.