Bilbao and the Basque Country Restaurants

Foodies may never want to leave the Basque Country, where the avant-garde and home cooking mingle seamlessly. Though top restaurants are expensive in Bilbao, some of what is undoubtedly Europe's finest cuisine is served here in settings that range from the traditional hewn beams and stone walls to sleekly contemporary international restaurants all the way up to the Guggenheim itself, where superstar chef Martín Berasategui runs a dining room as superb as its habitat. San Sebastián is another enclave of delicious food, where sampling from pintxos bars is an art form.

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  • 1. Gaucho

    $ | Spanish

    This legendary tavern, which remains surprisingly calm even during San Fermín, serves some of the best tapas in Pamplona. Opt for classics like...Read More

  • 2. Bergara

    $$$ | Gros | Spanish

    Winner of many a miniature cuisine award (don't miss the prawn-filled txalupa tartlet), this Gros neighborhood standby offers a stylish take...Read More

  • 3. Berton Bukoi

    $$ | Casco Viejo | Spanish

    Dinner is served until midnight in this sleek yet casual pintxo spot in the casco viejo. The industrial design—think wood tables with a green...Read More

  • 4. Café Iruña

    $$ | Café

    Pamplona's gentry has been flocking to this ornate, French-style café since 1888, but in 1926 Ernest Hemingway made it part of world literary...Read More

  • 5. Gorriti

    $ | Parte Vieja | Spanish

    Next to the open-air Brecha Market, this traditional little pintxos bar is a well-priced neighborhood standby filled with good cheer and delicious...Read More

  • 6. Gure Kabi

    $$$ | El Ensanche | Spanish

    This family-friendly restaurant off the tourist track serves a wide range of unfussy, lovingly prepared dishes ranging from creamy squid croquetas...Read More

  • 7. San Marcial

    $$ | Centro | Spanish

    Nearly a secret, this quintessential Basque spot has big wooden tables and a monumental bar filled with cazuelitas (small earthenware dishes...Read More

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