Catalonia, Valencia, and the Costa Blanca Restaurants

Catalonia's eateries are deservedly famous. Girona’s Celler de Can Roca was voted the best restaurant in the world in 2015 in the annual critics’ poll conducted by British magazine Restaurant, and a host of other first-rate establishments continue to offer inspiring fine dining in Catalonia, which began in the hinterlands at the legendary Hotel Empordà. You needn’t go to an internationally acclaimed restaurant, however, to dine well. Superstar chef Ferran Adrià of the former foodie paradise elBulli dines regularly at dives in Roses, where straight-up fresh fish is the day-in, day-out attraction. Northern Catalonia's Empordà region is known not only for seafood, but also for a rich assortment of inland and upland products. Beef from Girona's verdant pastureland is prized throughout Catalonia, while wild mushrooms from the Pyrenees and game from the Alberes range offer seasonal depth and breadth to menus across the region. From a simple beachside paella or llobarro (sea bass) at a chiringuito (shack) with tables on the sand, to the splendor of a meal at El Celler de Can Roca, playing culinary hopscotch through Catalonia is a good way to organize a tour.

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  • 1. Casa Anita

    $$$$ | Seafood

    Simple, fresh, and generous dishes are the draw at this informal little eatery, an institution in Cadaqués. It sits on the street that leads...Read More

  • 2. El Celler de Can Roca

    $$$$ | Contemporary

    Anointed twice (in 2013 and 2015) by an international panel of food critics and chefs as the best restaurant in the world, El Celler de Can...Read More

  • 3. Els Fogons de Can Llaudes

    $$$$ | Spanish

    A faithfully restored 10th-century Romanesque chapel holds proprietor Jaume Soler's outstanding restaurant—one of Catalonia's best. A typical...Read More

  • 4. Hotel Empordà

    $$$$ | Spanish

    Just 1½ km (1 mile) north of town, this restaurant run by Jaume Subirós–-housed within a rather nondescript, 42-room hotel–-has been hailed...Read More

  • 5. La Seu

    $$$ | Spanish

    Under co-owners Fede and Diana Cervera and chef Xicu Ramón, this distinguished restaurant in the center of town continues to reinvent and deconstruct...Read More

  • 6. La Taberna del Gourmet

    $$$ | Spanish

    This wine bar and restaurant in the heart of the casco antiguo (old town) earns high marks from locals and international visitors alike. A...Read More

  • 7. Pa i Raïm

    $$$ | Spanish

    Bread and Grapes" in Catalan, Pa i Raïm is an excellent restaurant set in writer Josep Pla's ancestral family home in Palafrugell. It has one...Read More

  • 8. Bubbles Gastrobar

    $$$$ | Spanish

    Excellent Catalan tapas with Mediterranean-fusion touches are served here in a simple setting just across the river from the Força Vella. Choose...Read More

  • 9. Ca l'Enric

    $$$$ | Spanish

    Chefs Jordi and Isabel Juncà have become legends in the town of La Vall de Bianya, just north of Olot, with exquisite cuisine that’s firmly...Read More

  • 10. Cal Ros

    $$$ | Spanish

    Tucked under the arcades just behind the north end of Plaça de la Llibertat, this restaurant combines ancient stone arches with crisp, contemporary...Read More

  • 11. Can Segura

    $$ | Spanish

    Half a block in from the beach at Sant Feliu de Guixols, this restaurant serves home-cooked seafood and upland specialties. The dining room...Read More

  • 12. El Buen Comer

    $$ | Spanish

    On the edge of the old town, this relaxed two-tier restaurant serves enticing dishes in plentiful portions. Downstairs, indulge in tapas and...Read More

  • 13. El Dorado Mar

    $$$ | Seafood

    Around the southern end of the beach at Sant Feliu de Guixols, perched over the entrance to the harbor, this family seafood restaurant offers...Read More

  • 14. El Raset

    $$$ | Seafood

    Across the harbor, this Valencian favorite has been serving traditional cuisine with a modern twist for more than 30 years. From a terrace with...Read More

  • 15. La Costera

    $$$ | French

    This popular restaurant focuses on fine French fare, with such specialties as house-made foie gras (simply called foie), roasted lubina (sea...Read More

  • 16. La Cuina de Can Simon

    $$$$ | Spanish

    Elegantly rustic, this restaurant right beside Tossa de Mar's medieval walls serves a combination of classical Catalan cuisine with up-to-date...Read More

  • 17. La Pepica

    $$$ | Spanish

    Locals regard this bustling, informal restaurant, on the promenade at El Cabanyal beach, as the best in town for seafood paella. Founded in...Read More

  • 18. La Riuà

    $$ | Spanish

    A favorite of Valencia's well connected and well-to-do since 1982, this family-run restaurant a few steps from the Plaza de la Reina specializes...Read More

  • 19. La Sucursal

    $$$$ | El Carmen | Mediterranean

    This thoroughly modern but comfortable restaurant in the Institut Valencià d'Art Modern is likely to put a serious dent in your budget, but...Read More

  • 20. Les Cols

    $$$$ | Spanish

    Chef Fina Puigdevall has made this sprawling 18th-century masia (Catalan farmhouse) a triumph. In the restaurant, the cuisine on the prix...Read More

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