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“The best meal of the trip” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Tickets

Avinguda Paral.lel 164, 08015 Barcelona, Spain (El Raval)
+34 932 92 42 53
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Ranked #93 of 6,929 Restaurants in Barcelona
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Seafood, Asian, Tapas
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Doing business, Special occasions, Local cuisine
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
Neighborhood: El Raval
Description: Un original concepto de tapeo en Barcelona, una forma divertida de comer y de entender la vida. ¿Vienes?
Chicago, Illinois, United States
1 review
“The best meal of the trip”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

I had pretty high expectations but still it blew my mind. The famous El Bulli olive is good. The cheese puff pastry is awesome. But the best dishes were the ones that seem ordinary. One chicken dish I had was a crispy chicken skin cracker on the bottom and three slices of roasted chicken breast. The chicken melts into my mouth like the best blue fin toro sashimi..with intense chicken flavor. The tomato salad is also a must try. The innocent looking gazpacho gelee taste more intense than the ripest tomato I ever had.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,161 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Excellent food, rude staff”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

This is an unusual restaurant with a contrived and disingenuous "wacky" atmosphere. The food is as tasty and lovingly prepared as you'd expect from a EUR 100 per person charge (incl. drinks), and it's certainly money well spent when you get to experience the famous spherified olives and inventive treats such as the caipiranha oyster. And it was great to see Albert Adria himself on hand overseeing things.

What cost Tickets a good rating from me (and a tip) was the alarmingly rude staff. Asked whether we wanted spoken to in English or Spanish, we replied English (as native English speakers, given the choice, why not?) and were greeted with a roll of the eyes. A roll of the eyes! Then we were told that we shouldn't order ourselves as we would have no concept of how big each dish was and how much to order. My single request of deviation from the recommended menu was met with a shrug as if to say "suit yourself". Each dish (delicious, make no mistake) was presented with a sullen-faced sigh of exasperation and a mumbled explanation. The real shock though, was when we were struggling to identify an ingredient in a dish and asked if the red cubes were tomato - the waiter told us they were in fact raw tuna, then turned to a colleague and proceeded to mock our ignorance, in Spanish. The two of them had a good snigger at our expense. It was enough to put a real dampener on what otherwise would have been a nice meal.

A word of advice to any of the staff reading this: just because customers choose to be spoken to in English, it doesn't mean they don't understand what you're saying in Spanish.

I hope that we were simply unlucky and that this isn't representative of the attitude of all the staff there. If the latter it may explain why the place was half empty on a Saturday night. Great food or not, that attitude is going to stop people coming back. Perhaps the serving staff resent having to dress up like 1920s bellhops or as walking billboards for the restaurant's many corporate sponsors (the chefs' resemble Formula 1 racing drivers).

In summary: a gastronomic experience for committed foodies to tick off the list (especially if like me you missed out on elBulli), but not an inviting or comfortable destination for a good night out.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
37 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“High expectations, slightly disappointed”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

Having just finished a fantastic dining experience at Cal Pep, we had very high expectations for Tickets. We unfortunately left disappointed, because:

-Every single dish was room temperature. Not sure if this was intentional, but it made for a less than satisfying experience. Some dishes certainly can be room temperature, but certainly not EVERY dish

-Surprisingly the dishes did not serve to highlight the natural flavors of the ingredients, especially since the ingredients are no doubt top notch

-Novelty for novelty's sake: I get the approach, which is to make a whimsical journey using food as the story-telling medium...but this might have been possible to do without losing focus on flavor. After all I'd go to a movie if all I wanted was entertainment. To go to a restaurant, all things might be good, but the crux of the delivery is fantastically delicious food

We were glad to have visited, as the server was keen on getting feedback and obviously excited at his job, and it can be notched up as an experience, but I wouldn't be in a huge hurry to return.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Incredible presentation of delicious food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2013

Amazing food, presentation, and service in quirky atmosphere. Olive signature dish cannot be described - must be experienced! Felt a little rushed at the end, apparently to turn oer the table. Go with four or more to have a greater variety of dishes and tastes.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great Imaginative Food, Odd and Poor Service”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2013

We were looking forward to our dinner at Tickets for two months. Most of the food we had was very good to excellent with one exception but the service we had was very poor.

First the good part: Fried Pistachios, Peaches marinated in white wine, white rum, (a cocktail within the fruit slices) the famous El Bulli "olives" an explosion of olive essence, the cheese airbags (again an explosion of flavor) , the quail eggs with the amazing presentation, the manchego cheese with hazelnut caviar airbags, then the delicious foie gras with the tiny corn puff, a selection of a half dozen oysters done three ways (we preferred the natural and the red wine vinegar with the olive oil caviar to the ones with the ponzu sauce which masked the taste), the marinated fish with the shiitake mushrooms was delicious, then the sandwich with the pork and mozzarella with brioche was fabulous. The unsuccessful dish was the chicken with a BBQ sauce that really was not that great and which we didn't order anyway (more on that later), then two fabulous desserts with liquid chocolate enclosed in pastry and the second a cold cylinder of chocolate formed as a cigar and filled with hazelnut ice cream. The presentation was great.
Now you say, what could mar this wonderful dinner? Read on.

Now for the poor. We reserved early in the evening and from the time we arrived felt rushed through everything. Since we had studied the menu and pretty much knew what we wanted, we told the server we would choose our dishes but welcomed her guidance. At each stage, we consulted her about the dishes. Perhaps they prefer it if it if you let them decide what you eat. They suggested that at the beginning. It seems to be a part of their theater to bring out the dish and discuss the great things they've chosen for you.

We ordered four things from the first part of the menu. Despite the server saying they would bring them out one at a time, the peaches arrived just after the pistachios. We wanted to savor what we ate but they made it difficult. Each time the server brought out the last dish on that part of the menu, she said, this is the last tapa you've ordered, do you want to order more? Couldn't she wait for the one or two bites of the dish to ask us. We would have preferred that we be asked this after the dish was eaten so we didn't have to juggle the menu and try to enjoy the presentation and the dish at the same time. The dishes came fast and furiously. After the first round we asked her to slow down and she said of course but didn't really change that much.

After we asked about some of the dishes, she twice brought us the last dish we asked about instead of the one we had decided on. Perhaps there was a language problem. As a result we got the marinated fish which was fine since we were thinking about it anyway but the second time we ordered the bean, sausage and octopus casserole and got the chicken which we didn't want. We should have sent it back and I'm sure they would have been gracious about it. But we hardly felt like fighting the tide at that point. It was only an hour after we'd entered so you can imagine how fast this dishes were coming. We noticed other people who had come in at exactly the same time being served more slowly, so who knows what it was. Did they need to turn our table over to use for another group, did they not like the way we ordered? Who knows.

The final straw was when the waitress delivered the last main dish and she asked if we would like to have dessert outside at deserted tables in the front of the restaurant. Why we would want to contemplate dessert before we even finished our other dishes. Why would we want to change tables.? It wasn't even that warm last night.

We have dined at some great restaurants and are seasoned world travelers. We were polite and interested diners. I have never felt less welcome at any restaurant of this caliber before. The food was great and interesting but we ended the evening feeling like the whole experience was very marred.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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