Can Ganassa

A bar that is a living history of the neighborhood

The beginnings

It opened its doors at the beginning of the 20th century as a wine cellar, tapas bar and grocery store. It was a small place located on the corner of Sant Miquel and Escuder streets, opposite where it was and is now.

After the war it was moved to its definitive location. It was still a bodega, with boots, ice bars and filling siphons to the clientele, but still without a kitchen. The tapas that were served were prepared upstairs where the Ganassa family lived. Simple tapas with good and quality products: anchovies “cleaned the way nobody else does” -they said-, tuna tacos in olive oil, steamed mussels with mayonnaise and the special touch of grated hard-boiled egg or, among others, their snails in sauce with a spicy touch.

The founders were Mrs. Rosita and her husband Mr. Josep Domingo, who were helped by their sons Pepe and Juanito with the support of their daughter Emilia. Soon the sons’ wives, Ana and Rita respectively, joined them. Can Ganassa, a whole family saga!

Josep Domingo died young in one of the trips in Arenys de Mar, where they also became owners, not sailors, of the fishing boats Santa Marta and Santa Rosa.


Damm distributor and ice distributors.

Entrepreneurs by birth, the Ganassa family also had a beverage warehouse and above all, for years were the exclusive neighborhood distributors of Damm beers, until a few years ago in the hands of Rita (Riteta to the family), daughter of Juanito and Rita.

In its origins as a bodega and for many years afterwards they also served ice in bars that they brought from the La Siberia factory in Pueblo Nuevo. They delivered to bars and restaurants in the area by truck with Vicenç “the Valencian” and the endearing Pitu “the crazy”, who despite his circumstances was a man faithful to his work and family. They also served the ice in a handcart by Lorenzo’s shoulder pads with the help of Salva, son of the ever-present waiter in Salvador Reyes.

In 1972 they expanded the premises with the consequent restructuring: relocation and expansion of the bar, installation of their own kitchen inside, diversification and growth of the food offer. In short, the old wine cellar leaves the bar-restaurant that we know.

The sons of the founders Pepe and Juanito died not very old and Ana, Pepe’s widow “Pepito” transferred the premises in 1975. A period of almost 75 years of family business came to an end, but fortunately the spirit of Can Ganassa was maintained thanks to the vision and respect of the subsequent owners.

Referent of the neighborhood.

Can Ganassa has always stood out as an authentic social reference of the Barceloneta.

For decades, Can Ganassa was the only bar in the Plaza San Miquel (that’s how we locals will always call it) and a meeting point at the vermouth hour and after mass. All the baptisms, communions, marriages and, above all, funerals, ended up at Ganassa.

Of course, it was the social club for many years of the Barretaires choir.

A fact that perhaps few will know, is that in the decade of the 40-50, in a corner of the old bar, on weekends a varied offer of shows with, among others, sleight of hand and singers.

The same Can Ganassa.

Respect. This is the concept that the current owner, Rachid Zahi, has very clear. Respect for a place that is living history of the neighborhood, respect for a cuisine that is one of the values of the Barceloneta.

And this commitment to maintain the embers of the same-old Can Ganassa is recognized by many of those customers. Like Salva Reyes himself, living memory of the local, who are faithful to an establishment that is part of their own vital history.


We want to give special recognition to the one who has explained so many things to us that would not fit in a single magazine: In Salva (son) Reyes Soler. That boy who, climbing on an empty beer crate to be able to reach the tile, began to earn four “duros” cleaning the “casings” of the coffee machine and filling siphons, under the watchful eye and an always-present smile of his father Salvador.

You may also be interested in

More articles