Glorious pit stop!
Posted on 12 / 29 / 2007
Why is this restaurant without a review? Lleida isn't the hottest tourist destination, I suppose, but those passing through -- i.e. between Barcelona and Madrid -- should make a beeline for this place. Clever vegetarian adaptations of typical Catalan dishes and ingredients (casseroles, rice dishes, salads, etc.) with glorious homemade desserts in serious portions at comparatively reasonable prices.
I first learned of Paradis through "La Cuina del Paradis", perhaps the only vegetarian Catalan cookbook in existence; it's a great resource for vegetarians attracted to Catalan flavors and techniques without the botifarra. Like the book, Paradis is full of love for fresh Mediterranean produce, olive oils, herbs, wine, etc., in novel but satisfying combinations. I went there over 2 years ago and can't remember exactly what I ate, except that at a table of 4 the only thing subpar was my Arròs Negre (normally a sort of paella made with squid ink), here made with brown rice and a seaweed sautee -- a bit bland compared with my dates' Mil Fulls of zuchinni and egglant or stewed seitan with wild mushrooms.
Correct, unpretentious service in a warm, traditional environment, and veg fare on the level of the best I've had in Spain (Sésamo in BCN, Garibolo in Bilbao, etc.). Go!