Next door to the Hotel Banys Orientales and owned by the same family, Senyor Parellada has been extensively refurbished since our last visit a couple of years ago. The dining area seems to have shrunk slightly, but it retains the high ceiling, colonial style arches and bench seats that we remembered from previous meals, and the menu seems to have been revamped too. The restaurant was completely full and we were glad of having made a reservation as there seemed to be a perpetual queue at the door. Whereas before it was Catalans who dined in Senyor Parellada, the restaurant buzzed to the sound of conversation in English.
Waiting on the table to accompany our deliberations of the menu was a parcel containing black olives, which made a good start. The restaurant has been around for absolutely years and specialises in Catalan cuisine and we eventually decided on "Festival de Closca" (a mixture of mussels, clams and various other shellfish) and "Fideus Arrossejats" (noodles fried slightly in olive oil, then cooked to absorb a seafood stock). We followed this with "Orada al forn" (baked gilthead sea bream, always an excellent fish) and "Xai a les dotze cabeçes" (lamb cooked with a head of garlic) and washed it down with a bottle of Viña Sol.
The service was excellent, and we were astounded when someone on the table next to us commented to the waiter that their salt cod salad was too salty (it is soaked in water to remove most of the salt). Not only had the waiter asked how the meal was, but he relayed the information back to the chef and the whole table was rewarded with a liqueur from the Maitre d'.
With a shared cube of cheese cake, bottle of mineral water, a glass of bourbon and a glass of the house red the bill came to a ridiculously cheap €50.34. Book in advance, you won't get in otherwise.
Carrer de l'Argenteria 37, Tel: 93 310 50 94