The mythical Pinotxo bar in La Boqueria has a new owner

Joan Bayen, better known as Juanito, has sold his business to the owner of Bar Central, also located in Barcelona's most famous market.

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Juanito, the best-known old waiter in La Boqueria market, has moved on from his iconic bar: the Pinotxo. Joan Bayén (that’s really his name) announced late last year that he was retiring for health reasons after more than 75 years (he’s 89) at the helm of the counter. He then left the business in the hands of his nephews, who had already been working alongside him for decades. However, a few days ago the plans changed: as reported by Betevé, the municipal television of Barcelona, Bayén has finally decided to transfer his establishment to the owners of Bar Central (also located in the most famous market of Barcelona) due to a lack of family agreement.

Apparently, a dispute between Juanito and his nephews has been the trigger for the waiter to sell the bar. However, after the transfer has been approved by the Institute of Markets of Barcelona, the new owner has explained that his intention is to maintain the essence of Pinotxo, with “market dishes, without touching the prices”. What is not yet known is whether the name of the restaurant will be kept.

The bar, which has opted (at least until now) for traditional dishes such as cap i pota, spinach with chickpeas or trinxat, has become after many years in operation an undisputed meeting point for any self-respecting gourmet. And Juanito, its creator, has become the legend of La Boqueria. A figure known for his charisma and vitality (always dressed, by the way, in a vest and bow tie) who now says goodbye after more than seven decades serving coffees from 4 in the morning.