The 10 Best Restaurants In El Carmen, Valencia

Untitled | Courtesy of Refugio Restaurante del Carmen
Peggy Lee

El Carmen is famous for being one of Valencia‘s busiest neighborhoods in the central Old Town district. The area is full of cafés, bars and restaurants tucked away in El Carmen’s little streets or small squares. It can be difficult knowing which restaurant to pick for a quick lunch or a romantic dinner when there are so many places to choose from. Here is our selection of the top ten restaurants in El Carmen, Valencia.


1. Taberna El Olivo

Restaurant, Bar, Spanish, Vegetarian, Tapas

Taberna El Olivo can be found in Plaza del Arbol, or ‘Tree Square’, tucked away behind a giant olive tree. The restaurant is painted an olive yellow though, so you can’t miss it. Here you can sit out on the terrace with a glass of beer protected from the sun by the shade of the tree. This restaurant specializes in traditional Spanish tapas such as pulpo afeita(octopus) or cazón en adobo (slices of heart mixed with spices and then deep-fried), and there are also vegetarian tapas. The Taberna is popular with the local Valencians.

2. Refugio Restaurante del Carmen

Restaurant, Mediterranean

Courtesy of Refugio Restaurante del Carmen
This unusual restaurant is located in a former air-raid shelter from the Spanish Civil War. The old white-washed brick walls are still showing as the owners did not wish to hide the building’s history. This alternative restaurant started out by cooking with cannabis leaves, their dishes inspired by a North-African style cuisine. It has since changed name and moved on to experiment with unique combinations of cooking techniques and flavors from around the world. Their slogan is ‘cooking revolution’. Come and sample delicious dishes such as anchovies with fresh figs or white miso with Mexican jalapeños peppers.

3. La Tastaolletes

Restaurant, Vegetarian, Vegan

© Monik Markus/Flickr
La Tastaolletes is a vegetarian and vegan restaurant. All their food is fresh and homemade with seasonal ingredients. They change their menu every day, experimenting with new recipes, and you might find such dishes as soups, bean stews, falafel, omelettes, chili ‘sin’ carne, pasta or makis. They also do delicious puddings like chocolate brownies, apricot tarts or carrot, coconut and cashew nut truffles flavored with orange blossom and cinnamon. You’ll forget all about meat when eating this wonderful food.

4. La Carme

Restaurant, French, Mediterranean, Spanish, Greek

Carrer dels Soguers El Carme València
© Joanbanjo/WikiCommons
This chic restaurant has an attractive old-fashioned look with a grandfather clock in the corner, wooden beams and a crystal chandelier. Their cuisine is French, Greek and Mediterranean based. They serve such dishes as pork cutlets with honey, duck fillet marinaded in an orange and raisin sauce or salmon with a dill sauce. All the cooking is homemade, the staff are professional and friendly, and the prices very reasonable.

5. Restaurant Blanqueries

Market, Restaurant, Mediterranean

Carrer de la Blanqueria
© Thijs ter Haar/Flickr
Located next door to the Torres de Serranos, this restaurant uses local produce from the market for their cooking. The cuisine is classic Mediterranean and most of their dishes are meat, fish or rice based. They offer tasty starters too, such as the liver terrine with vanilla, dried fruit and peach compote. The decor is elegant, modern and minimalist with light wood and white surfaces. The cooks are understanding about food intolerances and always have a menu that can be easily adapted for people who require specific diets.

6. El Celler del Tossal

Restaurant, Spanish, Mediterranean, Vegetarian

Courtesy of El Celler del Tossal

This restaurant hides an original roman aqueduct in the cellar-basement. The owners secretly wish to turn this into a wine-pipeline, loving wine themselves and knowing that guests would adore the concept. It’s sadly not quite feasible yet but keep your fingers crossed. El Celler del Tossal promotes three things: rice, hot charcoal and wine. Accordingly, most dishes are rice-based, the fresh meat and fish are cooked on a charcoal grill which gives it its good flavor, and there is a large variety of quality wines to choose from. The décor is modern and elegant, and the staff is professional and friendly.

7. La Comisaría

Restaurant, Mediterranean, Asian

Crispy beef at Restaurante La Comisaria
© MollySVH/Flickr
La Comisaría can be found in the Plaza del Arbol like Taberna El Olivo. However, this restaurant offers slightly less traditional tapas. Here, they combine Mediterranean with Asian cuisine. They use Asian cooking techniques to give the dishes a whole new combination of flavors and fragrances. The head chef and manager, Edward Phillips Blanco, was trained by the celebrity British chef Gordon Ramsay. If you visit, you are in for a treat.

8. Restaurante Trenca Dish

Restaurant, Spanish, Mediterranean, French

Paella seafood
© Schomynv/WikiCommons
This trendy renovated restaurant is decorated with old-fashioned dressers and leather chairs. The round vaulted doorways are especially beautiful. The restaurant specializes in Spanish and Mediterranean cooking, particularly in seafood dishes. The lobster is really popular, as is the octopus carpaccio with quail eggs, and they serve some authentic Valencian specialties. All products are fresh and dishes are homemade. You should also try the Horchata Torrija, a Spanish French bread soaked in milk, honey and wine which is normally eaten around Easter, it’s simply delicious.

9. Néboa Restaurant

Restaurant, Spanish, Contemporary, Vietnamese

Néboa is a modern and minimalist restaurant with contemporary art adorning the walls. The menu mixes traditional Spanish dishes, such as patatas bravas and paella, with other dishes such as Vietnamese spring rolls and hamburgers which reflect the influence of world cooking on the Spanish culinary scene. The best thing is that you can enjoy a delicious three course meal for a ridiculously cheap price. They have a menu in English for those of us who find Spanish a little tricky.

Culture Trip Summer Sale

Save up to $1,395 on our unique small-group trips! Limited spots.

Edit article