First stop, Jamon
Whoever planned La Boqueria's layout was smart. You don't even need to walk into the belly of the market before spotting a jamon vendor on your right of the main entrance. Hello, jamon. A couple seconds after this photo was snapped, our friend there started slicing away at one of the legs hanging above him.
Depending on how the pig was raised, its diet and environment, the jamon prices range. And don't forget the chorizo hanging too! Whatever type of porky mood, you'll be able to satisfy it here.
They can sure cram a lot into these produce stalls. Garlic ropes and dried peppers hang from above, walls of fruits in waves of colors, and plenty of the Spanish staple veggies like tomatoes, various peppers, onions, and eggplant, all here.
Cherries, giant figs, mangoes, kiwi, and more, many of which you can also buy sliced and packaged, ready to eat.
Conveniently, they pack them all up with multi-colored forks and spoon, so you can immediately start crunching and scooping.
Just about any piece of fruit you could imagine and even some veggies get juice-ified here. There are many juice vendors near the entrance and along the periphery. You can't go a few steps without seeing another mango, papaya, or bright green kiwi juice. They don't add anything bogus to them either—it's just fruit all blended up, sometimes with a splash of water. Read more about the juices here.
Candy and Nuts
Melon-shaped marzipan and banana bunches, chocolate-covered nuts, and plenty of candied fruits.
As a lover of eggs and egg illustrations, the egg stalls might have been my favorite. Name an egg-laying animal, they probably sell its eggs. Ostrich, quail, goose, duck... They range in color from white to brown, and other eggy shades in between. Some are piled on straw nests, others are ready to purchase by the dozen in crates.
Our favorite tapas bar at La Boqueria. Grab a bar stool (and there aren't many, so prepare to hover before scoring one) for tortilla de verduras (a vegetable omelet) or a stew of chickpeas and morcilla (cocido de garbanzos) or really just whatever someone else next to you has that looks tasty. If you've been here before, odds are you'll recognize Mr. Bowtie there behind the counter.
Our gal Chichi would make a beeline to these meat cases. There's no censoring of animal parts here, you'll see it all. Eyeballs, other ball-shaped parts, tongues, brains, tripe, and many other organs galore.
The Olive Man
Pick an olive, any olive. Olive man will scoop them up for you. Of course the Spanish olives are well-repped here, including the juicy green Manzanillas and purplish-blackish Empeltres.
Gloves on and ready to fill your sea creature order.
Many thin slabs of the dried salt cod fillets.
Can't you almost just squish the wet, fleshy tentacles on this octopus? There were quite a few fresh-caught cephalopods spread out on ice.
Yet another jamon vendor at the market. They sell the jamón ibérico de bellota (raised on only acorns) as well as jamón ibérico de recebo (raised on a combo of acorns and other grains) in addition to a bunch of charcuterie and other meats behind the glass. You can order from them online if you don't have a trip planned to the Boqueria anytime soon.
Licorice and Lollipops
Even licorice haters can appreciate the array of shapes available: vines, squares, and snail-like coils.
Pinchos de buñuelos
For sale by the stick. Buñuelos are just fried dough balls but can be filled with a variety of things, ranging from cheese to yam to herbs.
Peace and Jamon
This man is weighing jamon scraps, which are not wasted, fear not.
The leftover morsels and bits go into this little French-Fry-receptacle-looking thing. How's that for an afternoon snack?