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Avesta A twist to the green fairy

Unconventional and pleasantly surprising, Avesta is a secret find that you won’t wanna miss out on. Tucked down one of Barcelona’s narrow dark alleys in the Barrio Gotico, lies a bar that stands no more than six feet high—its low ceilings are lined with original wooden beams and the capacity is what one might compare to a can of sardines. This hole in the wall may be small, but their drinks pick up the slack. Milk and absinthe. Oh yes, milk and absinthe is their signature drink. Although a fully stocked bar, you’d have to be a fool, or just very lactose intolerant, to miss out on this one-of-a-kind concoction. Their ten-euro jugs of absinthe mixed with flavored milk serve about ten shots. Some of their most popular flavors include chocolate, strawberry, banana, coffee, and mint. For an extra kick, the bartenders hand you cinnamon to sprinkle on top at your own discretion. Although they suggest it as shots, the combination is so damn tasty that almost everyone sips on it and before you know it, another jug is being ordered. If milk and absinthe seems wrong, you don’t want to be right.

KER Club Welcome to the big league

Whispers of a new party spot had been circulating for a while until a riotous opening bash shredded any semblance of underground cred. Nevertheless, while it may be no secret, KER is still hands-down (or should that be hands in air) one of the most exhilarating clubs in the city.

Those in control of the sound streams are at the top of the game. Let’s name drop the likes of Seth Troxler and Levon Vincent, alongside electro royalty in the shapes of Laurent Garnier and DJ Harvey. Music-wise, you get the picture already, but what about the bricks and mortar? Taking their cues from the iconic Spanish interior designer, Javier Regas, it’s a pretty sleek affair that pulls off the trick of being both intense and intimate.

That’s not to say there aren’t a couple blots on their scoresheet. The old ‘buy a bottle and be a VIP for the night’ policy is just not what we call a party. And the marauding official photographer doesn’t do anything for the vibe either. Needless to say, you won’t notice such nuisances when the dancefloor starts to throb.

Bar Oviso New bohemia

Situated in the Gothic quarter on the trippy, teeming Plaça de George Orwell, Bar Oviso stands out as an unassuming, ambient dive from which to seek respite from the whir of Barcelona’s engine of tourism.

With a colorful, sea faring-themed indoor mural, turn-of-the-century circus-style interior décor and an outdoor terrace on one of the city’s peppiest little squares, Bar Oviso attracts a pleasantly laid-back brand of bohemian.

Along with a café con leche, the crêpes prove mouth-watering, while ample Mediterranean dishes, fruit shakes and various vegetarian options—a rarity in pork-centric Spain—grace the menu. Cocktails and wines round out the cuisine. During luscious summertime, Oviso is a veritable Barcelonian oasis, offering tasty, handily priced meals-of-the-day that include a starter and main.

Boulevard Culture Club Rumble in la Rambla

Opened in 2009, Boulevard is an upgraded version of the former Fellini club. New interiors and—most importantly—a new Funktion One sound system makes Boulevard one of the best clubs in town for minimal techno and house styles which are played on the main floor by local talent like Andre Buljat or Negro (with the occasional guest appearance by international names like Josh Wink or D’Julz).

On the second floor urban styles like hip hop, funk and electro are featured, which makes sure that Boulevard is attended by a healthy mixture of clientele. The third floor, upstairs, features pop music.

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