Restaurante Barcal, El Poblado

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MEDELLIN | Restaurante Barcal opened in Medellin in 2015, and is one of the new wave of Colombian restaurants that’s putting the country on the map of those who enjoy dining around the world.

The fine dining restaurant specialises in taking diners on a journey through Columbia across a tasting menu that highlights indigenous ingredients and biodiversity. The space is calm and relaxing, using natural material in the interior, which opens out into a large courtyard, where diners can also view the open kitchen. The outdoor space is also home to the restaurant’s vegetable and herb garden. It all combines for an experience that’s high end, with zero pretension.

The kitchen is headed up by Medellin born owner/chef Miguel Warren, who studied at the Basque Culinary Center (BCC) in San Sebastian, Spain, before returning home. Warren and his team regularly visit Colombia’s varied regions to discover ingredients, and to find inspiration for the dishes that end up on the menu. The reverence for the ingredients is evident in each dish. When we visited our waiter (who spoke English), explained not just what each dish was, but the story behind it, and the significance of the local ingredients used.

Everything we tried was delicious, and we were introduced to several ingredients for the first time. Each dish is named after the region from where its primary ingredients are sourced. The starting dish set the scene for the entire meal. A trio of snacks highlighting the food of Antioqueña Mountain, the Popayán Plateau, and the Colombian Massif. It consisted of a sweet corn arepa with coffee mayonnaise and fresh Antioqueño cheese, a panela & yellow corn chicha (fermented corn drink), and pickled beet with Colombian pipián and peanuts from Pasto. A sublime assortment of flavours and textures.

A highlight was the cured chocó tuna with coconut milk, fariña meal, lime purée and oxalis plant, featuring ingredients from The Baudó Mountain Range and Southern Amazon. Another highlight was the beef tongue with cashews, sweet ají, and Santander ants, sourced from the Orinoco River Plains, Santandereana Mountain.

On the sweeter side of things, a green guava and pine tree honey ice cream from Antioqueña Mountain was outstanding, as was the finale, five chocolate samples served atop the respective cacao beans, highlighting the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, Meta River Plains, and Pacific Coast Plains.

For drinks, we opted for the wine match, fantastic value with generous pours of wines from South America and Europe. So generous in fact, that we were ‘double parked’ throughout the night.

A meal at Barcal isn’t just about good food and fantastic service. It’s about gaining a greater appreciation of Colombian ingredients, and the history of its varied people and regions. A must do dining experience in Medellin.

Restaurante Barcal

Calle 7D #43A-70
Medellín
Antioquia
Colombia

Telephone: +57 4 2688714
E-mail: [email protected]
Website

Open
Mon – Sat: 7:00pm to 10:00pm

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Paul
Paul
Paul founded The City Lane back in 2009 as a place to share photos of his travels around Europe with friends and family. The City Lane might have changed quite a lot since those early days but one thing that’s remained constant is Paul’s passion for food, travel and culture, and a desire to photograph and write about his experiences. Paul has a strong inquisitive nature that drives him to look beneath the surface in order to discover what really makes a city and its people tick, and what better way to do this than over a good meal or drink, with a city’s locals, at places that people who live in that city actually frequent. Paul is also a co-host of The Brunswick Beer Collective, a podcast that may or may not actually be about beer.

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