Food and Drink in Marbella
Marbella is not only a great place to relax and have some fun but its also a gourmets paradise, boasting a cosmopolitan array of restaurants.
Tour of the Tapas Bars
Once a year, the residents of Marbella celebrate the towns culinary status with a party they call 'La Ruta de la Tapa'. Tapas are the savoury snacks served with an alcoholic drink in bars throughout Spain. So that you don't miss out on the fun, we've created a tour of some of the best tapas bars that you can try any day of the year. You might start with a cold beer in La Bodeguita Marbellí and it will probably be accompanied by homemade ensaladilla rusa (Russian salad). Wash down a variety of cured hams and sausage with your second beer at La Sacristía or the Tasca Don Matute. Share a tortilla de ajos tiernos (spring onion omelette) over the next beer at El Burlaero.
In La Cervecería they'll offer you a little kebab with your drink. And at La Querencia the tapas are a meal in themselves. En Ca Curro is famous for smooth, sweet Moscatel wine, served with prawns or fresh fried fish.
By now you'll need a break so take a seat in one of Marbella squares or parks before hitting what is arguably the best tapas bar of them all, La Venecia de los Olivos, which has three branches around town and serves delicious savoury ribs. Head upmarket for a while and order a glass of vino fino (fine wine, or dry sherry) with a sophisticated canapé at Gorky. Next is a regional treat: cider and snacks from Asturias in the north of Spain at Sidrería Urogallo. Thought you were finished? Not likely. That was just a warm-up before lunch. And the choice of restaurants for lunch and dinner is as exciting as the tapas bars.
The Amanecer Country Tex Mex serves hot enchiladas with cold Mexican beer. If you can't survive without hamburgers, then make sure you eat the best at Old Texas. Delicate dishes from Thailand are available at Sukhothai, while hearty portions of beef are the order of the day at El Gaucho Argentino. How about sushi at Sakura? Or you can choose from two excellent Chinese restaurants. The Mandarin is considered to be the best on the Costa del Sol. And the Hong Kong is said to prepare the most succulent Peking duck in Marbella.
Italian cooking is well-represented here. Two especially fine examples are the Villa Tiberio and the La Fonte delle Streghe. In the Toni Dalli, you can expect to be entertained by a distinguished tenor. The Da Bruno specializes in fresh pasta and the Palacio de la Toscana prepares the best ravioli with spinach that you'll ever taste. There are also lots of small pizzerias in Marbella, selling thin and crispy pizzas to take away.
Carnivores are well catered for in Marbella, with three restaurants serving the finest quality meat in typical Castilian style. So you can try a lamb stew or a roast sucking-pig in El Rancho, or El Portalón or Asador Puerta del Príncipe. Those who prefer fish should head for Puerto Banús to try the days catch with a sea view at La Dorada or La Marina. Vegetarians can also expect the highest quality and service at Azafrán y Menta.
People who take their food seriously have probably already heard about the imaginative dishes at La Hacienda and if you dine at La Meridiana and Taberna del Alabardero, you'll fall in love with the chefs. The Santiago prepares fresh shellfish with reverence and the Víctor has special respect for lobster. All these five-star restaurants can be found in Puerto Banús and San Pedro de Alcántara.