Seville Foodie Tour: Tapas Y Mas
Ask me for my favourite place in the world and I’d respond ‘Seville’ without any hesitations! Seville is the city of flamenco, great hospitality and grand architecture – a legacy of the Moorish occupation in the past. Besides the impressive buildings, you can still sense the influence of the Moors in the delicious food. Not only did they introduce ingredients that are now essential in Spanish cooking such as cumin, cinnamon, rice, saffron (a key ingredient for paella), almonds, spinach, chickpeas and aubergine, but also methods of cooking such as frying in oil and preserving in vinegar.
From all the different places I’ve eaten in different Spanish cities – and believe me when I say I’ve done my research – Sevillian cuisine exceeds other cities’ by far!
I’m a big fan of ordering several tapas, smaller dishes, and sharing them with someone and taste a variety of different flavours and textures. Being such a big city, it can be quite daunting to find a good place to eat. In general it’s safe to say that the closer to the main sights and tourist attractions, the more expensive the food is and of less quality too. To make things easier I’ve compiled a list of my favourite tapas restaurants in Seville for you. ¡Buen provecho!
Modern & fusion
The mouthwatering photo at the top of this article is taken during lunch at contemporary tapas restaurant/wine bar La Azotea. It’s a modern restaurant with a crisp white interior which may look rather pricey, but isn’t really considering the quality of food. What also sets this restaurant apart from the average tapas restaurant in town is its extensive wine menu. A very good option if you want a proper sit-down meal and enjoy sophisticated modern tapas accompanied by a good glass of wine. Oh, and in case you were wondering what that scrumptuous meal in the photo is: it’s bacaloa in white salmorejo sauce and loads of garlic!
Address: Calle Jesús del Gran Poder, 31
Besides regular tapas, Duo Tapas also serves ‘fusion tapas’ such as pollo al curry (chicken curry) or Japanese-influenced dishes. Perhaps not a good option if you prefer the traditional tapas cuisine, but a fun choice if you’re in for a little adventure.
Address: Calatrava, 10
The place to eat for tapas purists! El Rinconcillo was established in 1670 and is the oldest surviving restaurant in Seville. Although it is a major tourist attraction, the staff is still very authentic in the sense that they don’t speak any English and that the regulars eating at the bar might make you feel slightly uncomfortable while you try to figure out what you’re actually ordering. In all honesty I have to admit that I don’t go here as often as the other restaurants in the list, but considering its history, it’s good to have at least one tapa here. Like the staff, also the interior looks very authentic with its dark oak furniture, classical Spanish/Moorish wall tiles and big legs of jamón hanging over the counter.
Address: Calle Gerona, 40
This is by far my favourite tapas restaurant in Seville! Partially because of its location on the huge square Alameda de Hércules which is lined with restaurants and pubs. It’s a place where the locals hang out every night, sometimes with their guitars and spontaneously play flamenco tunes. Whenever friends ask me for things to do in Seville, this square and restaurant are the very first things I mention. After arriving in Seville and checking in my hotel, my first stop is Badulaque where I order a tapa of patatas bravas (potato wedges with a spicy sauce) and tortilla de primavera (an egg-potato omelette topped with tuna and spicy sauce) with a cold caña (a small glass of beer, which I learned from a pro is a good way to ensure your drink remains cold in Mediterranean temperatures). I recommend coming here during the day as the evening menu is limited and a bit disappointing.
Address: Alameda de Hércules, 54
Dos de Mayo
My second favourite restaurant! Located on the quiet square Plaza de la Gaviria just a few minutes away from the big department store El Corte Ingles and the main shopping street Calle Sierpes. It’s the ultimate holiday feeling to sit here in the sun and enjoy classical dishes such as espinacas con garbanzos (spinach with chickpeas), pisto de verduras (ratatouille), queso de cabra con miel (goat’s cheese with honey) or croquetas de bacalao.
Address: Plaza de la Gaviria, 6
Tapas & flamenco
Bar T de Triana
You’ll notice there are countless options to see a flamenco shows at venues ranging from tiny bars in obscure alley ways to massive theatres. I prefer a more intimate setting that’s not too touristic. Bar T de Triana is located right at the edge of the former gypsy neigbourhood of Triana, the heart of Seville’s flamenco history and allegedly the best dancers, singers and musicians hail from. Visit Bar T de Triana for a meal and free flamenco show. If you come in an hour before a show, you beat the crowds and get the chance to snatch up a table right next to the stage. Good food for a good price and excellent flamenco artists. Although this is quite a well-known address with tourists too, I still like the ambiance here and love the high quality shows.
Address: Calle Betis, 20
Pinchos are particularly popular in northern Spain and you might have seen the Basque spelling for it, pintxo. Pinchos are a perfect way of sampling a whole range of different flavours and textures without stuffing yourself, although that doesn’t work for me as I always eat too much anyway. The great thing about going out for pinchos at Lizarran is that you can just grab whatever you want in the quantity you want without having to worry if you understand the menu, what you see is what you get.
Pinchos are typically wonderful ingredients, such as roasted pepper or spicy Iberian sausage, stuck to a piece of bread with a toothpick or served on its own on a skewer. At Lizarran you can choose from a range of cold and warm snacks and the price is determined by the amount of toothpicks and skewers. Come here around lunchtime or dinner service and pick some freshly made warm dishes that are served from big platters straight from the kitchen.
Address: Calle Javier Lasso de la Vega, 14
Fancy some ice cream? Then a trip to La Fiorentina ice cream parlour is compulsory! Despite being one of the best ice cream hot (or cold?) spots, it doesn’t get crowded by tourists as it’s located outside of the city centre. The ice cream is homemade and they get rather inventive with their seasonal flavours, but there’s also plenty to choose from if you’d rather stick with more classical flavours. Try out their signature flavour: orange blossom (flor de azahar). Ice cream can’t get much more decadent than this!
Address: Calle Zaragoza, 16
Tried all the restaurants and still hungry for more? Then just hang out around Alameda de Hercules, by far my favourite place in the city. There are plenty of options for bars and restaurants here and it’s a popular place for tourists but mostly locals. In the summer you can hear the cacophony of the chatting locals from afar. Or visit the modern indoor food market Mercado Lonja del Barranco next to Puente de Isabell II, the gateway to Triana.
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