Thursday, May 22, 2014


This celiac's dream: home fries, grilled burgers and a gluten free bun
Gracia, Barcelona, Spain

I have good news for the gluten free crowd of Barcelona. Hamburgers are back on the menu! Not soyburgers, or bunless beef patties, but bonafide high-grade, 200 gram beef burgers with your choice of creative accompaniments and a fresh, gluten free bun.

Ever since I was diagnosed with Celiac disease some 6 years ago, I have steered clear of guilty pleasures such as hamburgers and french fries. Why? As many of my fellow celiacs already know, most frozen french fries carry gluten in the form of wheat fillers. As far as burgers go, it's difficult to marry creative additions such as portobello mushrooms and gouda cheese to a burger without a bun.

Not any more. Thanks to La Vespa Burger, where they make celiacs feel civilized again by offering an artisan style, wheat-free bun with all of their burger choices, the decadent among us can give our tastebuds full range of the menu. Gourmet options such as the MACA burger, which offers a juicy 250 gram  Angus beef pattie topped with foie gras, arugula, and a chardonnay salsa can be had for about 9 euros, while typical fare, which means a 200 gram char-grilled, high grade beef burger with the fixings, will run around 7. The menu del dia, which includes a burger of your choice, crunchy homemade fries (truly light and wonderful going down!) and a drink is a good deal at 9.50 euros.

I have never seen this before!
Coverted motorcycle helmet light fixture 

Creative, Vespa inspired decor adds personality and Italian flair to La Vespa Burger Bar

The restaurant's theme, as you may have guessed, is built around the Vespa. Run by two Italian transplants, La Vespa Burger is decorated in a casual, irreverant style that pays homage to the iconic scooter and it's role in European city life. There are black and white photos on the walls, pendant lamps fashioned out of old motorcycle helmets and bookcases made out of halved chairs and even halved Vespas.

After savoring my first homemade hamburger in many years, I left the restaurant full and with a smile on my face. The Clasica burger hit the spot and the lightly salted, perfectly crispy home-cut fries were to die for.

There's more. Although the place is small and sometimes very crowded, the service was quick and attentive. For what more can you ask, here in BCN? Check it out celiacs. If you are craving a taste of the "free for all" past, you won't be disappointed.

La Vespa Burger Bar
Homemade hamburgers from the grill
Torrent de l'Olla 99
Lower Gracia
Barcelona, Spain
€ 11