Where should you go to taste some of the best tapas in Valencia?
Unfortunately, Valencia doesn’t have the kind of strong tapas culture you would find in Madrid or Andalusia.
Dining in Valencia follows a slightly different rhythm than in the rest of Spain. Most locals eat an almuerzo at 11:30 a.m. (usually a sandwich served on a baguette). They follow that up with lunch at 2:30 p.m. Then, there’s merienda around 5:30 p.m., when people have a coffee and a snack.
By the time dinner rolls around, a lot of people will have had one or two social meals already. I’ve found that suggesting tapas for dinner can sound exhausting to a Valencian after all that afternoon eating.
That said, small shared plates are a perfect way to punctuate an evening in Valencia. After all, bartenders here aren’t stingy with their wine pours or the gin-to-tonic ratios; it’s nice to have some small bites to cushion that blow.
In my two-plus years of living in the city, I haven’t found one single place that can lay claim to serving the best tapas in Valencia. There are fantastic tapas bars in each of the city’s neighborhoods, and “best” will be a matter of taste.
Whether you’re craving seafood, jamón or a vegan dish, you’ll find tasty tapas in each of the 10 bars and restaurants below.
The Best Tapas in Valencia
1. Bodega la Aldeana 1927
Some of the best dishes in Valencia come from Cabanyal, historically a working-class neighborhood where many people made a living by fishing. Bodega La Aldeana is from that world.
Tip: Go with whatever fresh seafood tapas are available that day. If you’re still hungry, ask for one of the giant bocadillos or a bowl of hearty stew.
Carrer de Josep Benlliure, 258 | Website | Phone: +34 961 05 49 23
2. Casa Montaña
Casa Montaña is a 180-year-old restaurant and possibly the most famous spot to order tapas in Valencia.
It’s another one of the city’s inheritances from pre-modern Cabanyal. The stars of Casa Montaña’s tapas menu are the clóchinas, or mussels, and the squid.
Tip: Don’t neglect the wine menu here. If you’re feeling adventurous, try a bottle from local bodegas like Clos Corví or Los Frailes.
Carrer de Josep Benlliure, 69 | Website | Phone: +34 963 67 23 14
3. Kaña Makan
Kaña Makan serves small plates that are much closer to Levantine meze than the Western Mediterranean idea of tapas.
The food is excellent, and it’s a welcome change of pace if you’ve been eating nothing but ham and cheese for four days straight.
Tip: Vegetarian options are plentiful on the menu, and a few of those dishes are or can be made vegan. What’s more, Kaña Makan probably has the friendliest service of any place on this list.
Carrer de Sueca, 61 | Website | Phone: +34 960 15 07 96
4. Cervecería Alhambra
You’ll miss Cervecería Alhambra if you’re not looking for it.
The place is a nondescript neighborhood spot with a walk-up counter and decor from the mid-20th century. Not a lot of tourists pass through Cervecería Alhambra. So, settle in one afternoon, soak up the local atmosphere and enjoy some of the best tapas in Valencia.
Tip: Valencia Secreta calls Alhambra’s tortilla the best in the city. Order a portion of it, and you’ll either get it served with chunks of bread or between slices of baguette as a bocadillo.
If you’re on a low-carb diet, this is probably the worst thing in the world you can order. But whatever — chase it with a doble of beer, then set a reminder to renew your gym membership when you get back home.
Carrer de Calixt III, 8 | Phone: +34 963 84 30 57
5. La Bodega Fila el Labrador
La Bodega Fila el Labrador is near the universities, and on a Thursday or Friday night it can get packed with students.
The tables are low, the lights are bright, and you have to elbow your way to the counter to get your order in. The bright side? You get to order mountains of delicious meats and cheeses to your heart’s content.
Tip: The wine selection here is great. Browse the bottles along the wall if it’s not busy, and bring whichever bottle you select to the counter. The staff will serve it along with the tapas you order.
Carrer del Dr. Manuel Candela, 58 | Website | Phone: +34 963 72 75 30
6. La Murta Vins i Tapes
The best tapas bar in Valencia’s Benimaclet neighborhood. The flavors are all reflective of local tastes.
A good starting point would be the sobrassada (a cured, slightly spicy sausage from the Balearics that approaches the consistency of a pâté). La Murta serves it with honey, and the savory-sweet balance is perfect.
Follow that with a cremaet (pictured above), a liquor-and-coffee after-dinner drink that will earn you nods of appreciation.
Tip: Benimaclet is a great neighborhood to explore. It’s conspicuously left-leaning and full of students, the menus are written in Valencian, and its residents cultivate a real sense of community.
Carrer de la Murta, 14 | Website | Phone: +34 961 33 69 71
7. La Santa
If you are visiting Valencia for more than just a couple of days, you’ll likely have at least a couple of meals in the Cánovas neighborhood, where La Santa is.
There are plenty of trendy, splashy, Michelin-rated restaurants in this part of the city, but La Santa isn’t that. It’s still a neighborhood bar (albeit a pretty gorgeous one) with simple tapas, heavy-handed gin pours and good service.
Tip: If you intend to go during dinnertime, call ahead and make a reservation. La Santa is too small for even two people to drop in on a busy night, and spillover from all the other nearby restaurants keeps the bar packed Wednesday through Saturday.
Carrer de Ciscar, 13 | Website | Phone: +34 963 34 60 01
8. La Tavernaire
The best place for vegan tapas in Valencia.
La Tavernaire is a throwback to old Russafa, before the neighborhood gentrified. The tapas menu is written on a chalkboard (in Valencian), and seating is limited because there is a regular crowd that keeps the place busy.
Tip: La Tavernaire is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays and maintains limited working hours on Wednesdays and Thursdays. The best time to go is probably Wednesday or Thursday around 8 p.m.
If you’re looking for vegan tapas on a Monday or Tuesday, try Lo de Ponxe En El Kinto Pino (Plaça de Rojas Clemente), which is open from 1:30 p.m to 4:00 p.m. on those days.
Carrer de Dénia, 18 | Website | Phone: +34 605 83 82 99
9. Tasca el Botijo
This list is notably short on tapas bars in the Old Town. In general, I find it better to order tapas in neighborhood bars because the ambiance is more congruent with the experience.
Tapas are about eating slowly, chatting with friends, and enjoying a glass or two of wine. The Old Town is just too busy and too touristy for a good tapas dinner.
That said, Tasca el Botijo in El Carmen serves excellent food. The terrace isn’t terribly cozy (there’s a police station across the street with police cars always coming and going), and the interior is pretty small, but I still come back every few weeks because of the food.
Tip: Order the fried goat cheese. And if they have any bottles of Venta del Puerto No. 12 in stock, order a glass of that.
Carrer de Sant Miquel, 14 | Website | Phone: +34 960 83 44 54
10. Ultramarinos Agustín Rico
Cured meats. Cheeses. Wines. There’s probably more on the menu at Agustín Rico, but I’ve personally never ordered anything else. The charcuterie, cheese and wine selection here is one of the most extensive in the city.
Don’t be fooled by the bright lights or sleek modern design. Once you’re seated, the ambiance leaves plenty of room for long, lingering conversations while you and your friends indulge.
Tip: There are some fantastic Riojas in Agustín Rico’s bodega. They’re a little pricier than, say, the Venta del Puerto I mentioned above, but if you’re looking to splurge on wine, this is a good place to do it. The markup isn’t as steep as it would be in a restaurant in El Carmen.
Gran Via de les Germanies, 17 | Website | Phone: +34 963 41 47 71
Enjoy Tasting Some of the Best Tapas in Valencia!
As with the best paella, Valencia’s best tapas aren’t found in the city center. They’re found in neighborhood bars, taverns, and restaurants — the places where locals go for low-key weeknights out.
In other words, you’ll have to do a little walking to get your hands on the best tapas in Valencia. Which isn’t a bad thing — all that walking probably has something to do with why the Spanish live longer than just about everyone else in the world.
Tip: if you love tapas and are looking for something fun to do in Valencia, there is a great guided tapas tour that takes you to different parts of the city. Or, if you are looking for something more intimate, check out this private tasting tour.
Final Note: if you’ve been to other parts of Spain, you might have gotten used to getting a free tapa with each drink you order. That, unfortunately, is not common in Valencia! Some bars will have a “drink + tapa” at a reduced price, but that’s about as good as it gets. If you want to enjoy the best tapas in Valencia, you’ll have to order them.
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Map of the Best Tapas Bars in Valencia
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