La Cuchara de San Telmo perfectly represents the nueva cocina vasca (Basque new cuisine). Unlike many other tapas restaurants, the pintxos are not lined up on the counter but instead one orders from a blackboard behind the counter, with selections being freshly prepared. This restaurant has earned its reputation for some of the best pintxos in town. With its unpretentious atmosphere, it is no surprise that La Cuchara de San Telmo always boasts a lively vibe. Be prepared for the place to quickly fill up as the evening rush comes in and expect a vibrant, modern flair accompanied by traditional Basque cooking and surroundings.
La Viña is located on one of the busiest pintxo roads in the city and is the perfect choice for traditional cuisine. With chef Santiago Rivera taking over in 2013, its pintxos have become increasingly inventive while successfully retaining a wide range of traditional dishes. Its interior is simple and rustic, whilst unpretentious. Popular with the locals, it is however most famous for its cheesecake which some have judged to be one of the best you can find. It is not uncommon for it to sell out completely. La Viña is a down to earth eatery, where the charm of Basque culture is at its best.
Calle 31 de Agosto, 3, Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain, +34 943 42 74 95
Bar Martínez is located in the lively Casco Viejo but manages to stand out among the abundance of restaurants in this street. Its ambiance serves as a perfect finish or stop on a pintxos tour through the city. It offers a wide selection of cold as well as hot pintxos. Next to the modern generation of tapas bars, this place feels like a step back in time. The perfect location for experiencing Basque culture and dishes like a local.
Pescaderia 11, San Sebastian – Donostia, Spain, +34 943 42 49 65