A space for freedom


Since 1979 El Cau del Llop is the symbol of the willingness of some pioneers who opened an establishment in a deprived neighborhood because they thought there was another way of understanding the night.

Pau Lanao / Carme Vinyoles

El Cau del Llop, girona
The founders of El Cau celebrating the 25th Anniversary.

All started on May 10th 1979, when Carles Novell and Albert Presas decided to open a different kind of bar and chose for it old stables in Old Street Sacsimort , a place of thieves and whores with renowned reputation since 1889 when, according to the Diario de Gerona, sheltered individuals of complicated class and condition.

For Albert and Charles- who had restored the stables a few meters far from the Pou Rodó, where the Vedette, the Lina Bar or the Paco Bar proposed miserable sex nights – their idea was to serve drinks and some food. However, maybe because  they lighted the fire –essential and decisive element- or because the intellectuals, artists, politicians, workers and students felt good between those walls that offered shelter and idleness, what had started as an experiment  became an alternative, and it was  when Albert and Charles decided to leave the hut.

On 20 March 1986, the owners of El Cau sold the bar to two clients, Albert Vila and Quico Calero. The new owners wanted to preserve the atmosphere of El Cau, as the shelter the nonconformist and rebellious people, but serving food  started to be more important than, and gradually, toasts, omelettes and sausages  became  the hallmarks. The warm and welcoming atmosphere didn’t break even when Quico del Cau died.

El Cau continued to be a meeting place for anonymous men and women, but also for  some well-known people such as the musicians Joseph Thió,  Quico Pi de la Serra , Nina or  Adria pontí, the film director Jose Luis Nuñes or the painters  Enric Marquès or Modest Cuixart. Couples  and groups of friends have been established. More than a restaurant owner, Albert Vila became a friend of his customers, and when he announced that he left the bar for the 25th anniversary, it was his customers who encouraged him to make a dinner at Torre de Can Roca, where he invited 550 people who wanted to thank him the dedication and solidarity shown during the local life. Angel Ayats did the commemorative poster, Quim Corominas, 250 serigraphs and Pere Vicens sculptures made ​​of iron and wood. It was a worthy farewell to a tired activist whowas succeeded bya young spirited and courageous woman, Montse Soler.

On 13th January a new phase began with  Montse. She had promised to continue with the tradition of omelettes and toasts, but after six or eight months she began to introduce new dishes like hummus, salads or couscous.

On 31st  March 2013 Montse Soler leaves El Cau  to dedicate herself to one  of her passions: cooking and decides to explore new ways. For Albert, who was still the owner of El Cau, it was not easy to find a successor whooo would keep alive the essence of El Cau and continue the  history of more than thirty years of activity. The circumstances made that  an old acquaintance, a friend, a customer and a lover of El Cau appeared on stage and started this new phase of El Cau.

Àngel Ayats, Maricarmen Gómez, El Cau del Llop
Àngel Ayats and Maricarmen Gómez, celebrating the new phase of El Cau.

On 2nd May 2013, El Cau starts a new trip  with Angel Ayats and Maricarmen Gomez in charge of the business. The aim of the couple, during this new phase will be to restore the original spirit of El Cau. A place where  passion for good food is as important as  friendship, sharing, music, pleasure, satisfaction, feelings and discoveries. Altogether makes El Cau a space of freedom.