Given its location on Granada’s “Costa Tropical,” it’s not surprising that Almuñécar is famed throughout Andalusia for its superb seafood restaurants. Yet this lovely town’s best eateries also offer an impressive array of other dishes, as you’ll find below. Read on for seven restaurants that should be on every foodie’s list when visiting Almuñécar.
El Chaleco has Bib Gourmand status in the Michelin restaurant guide, which means that it serves food of exceptional quality but at more affordable prices than establishments possessing a star. Located on the outskirts of the old town, this French eatery specializes in patés and meats, with all dishes exquisitely presented. The staff are efficient and friendly and know the menu back to front. A couple of standout dishes are the rabbit cooked in beer with prunes, and the lamb shank a la francaise (not a cut of meat you find often in Spain)—but the fish and desserts are on the same level. This place is extremely popular with both foodie locals and visitors, so book ahead to avoid disappointment.
Repeatedly singled out for the attentiveness and efficiency of its waiting staff, Los Geraneos specializes in meat and fish dishes. Handily situated just behind Almuñécar’s main beach, it boasts one of the most attractive dining rooms in town, with an elegant white-and-blue theme, and dark oak beams on the ceiling. In this delightful space you can enjoy its carefully-presented and well-priced dishes, which range from traditional Andalusian stewed meats to fresh fish a la plancha (cooked on the grill). Wash it down with a glass of wine from their impressive list.
Offering an innovative menu of Spanish-Asian fusion dishes, Firmum is consistently named by locals and visitors as one of Almuñécar’s most exciting restaurants. You can either snack on tapas in the bar or enjoy a more formal dining experience in its chic restaurant, but wherever you eat you’ll enjoy some of the most nuanced cooking going on in Almuñécar. If you’re after some tapas, the mini hamburgers—served with mango chutney and goat’s cheese—are highly recommended, as are the red tuna tacos with sautéed spring onions and green asparagus if you want something more substantial. There is also a comprehensive wine list and the service is consistently spoken of as highly as the food.
If you’re after traditional Spanish meat and fish dishes and want a beautiful terrace on which to enjoy them, Meson Francisco II is your place. Located behind the trendy beachfront promenade of Paseo del Altillo, Francisco II boasts one of the cosiest and prettiest outside dining spaces in Almuñécar. Here you can feast on the BBQ-cooked chops, burgers, steaks, and sardines that have made this restaurant so popular among both locals and tourists. On the rare days when the weather’s not good enough to be outside, you can enjoy Francisco II’s substantial portions in a super-traditional interior, underneath the mounted heads of deer, wild boar, and fighting bulls.
As you’d expect from a restaurant boasting stunning sea views, Sabina’s speciality is fresh seafood, bought personally by the owner (after whom the restaurant is named) at the market each morning. This place is every fish-lover’s dream, with fresh sole, cod, prawns, sea bass, lobster, and much more, expertly cooked in classic sauces or on the grill, accompanied by salads and seasonal vegetables. Value-for-money is another of the restaurant’s strengths, and customers rave about the nine-euro paella (big enough for two or three people). The average meal for two plus wine will set you back about 30-35 euros, which is amazing given the freshness of the produce and the views you have while enjoying it.
Paella negra - black paella - is a speciality at Mar de Plata; tpf1959, pixabay
Another seafood and shellfish specialist, this hugely popular restaurant lies just off the lively Paseo San Cristobal near to the beach of the same name. It’s a great place to head for a fishy lunch if you’re spending a day on the beach: perhaps try the highly-rated paella negra, or black paella (which might look a bit intimidating but it’s delicious), which customers say is great value. It is served in generous portions, so it’s a good idea to order less than you think you’ll need. Also recommended are the salmon in leek sauce and the crispy grilled calamari and prawns. The serving staff at Mar de Plata are highly praised, especially for being flexible with late lunch or dinner arrivals and large groups turning up without reservations.
The White Tree restaurant is about a 10-minute walk out of Almuñécar’s center and serves superbly-cooked Spanish classics in an elegant dining space. Seated at the white-and-yellow-themed tables among great white tree trunks (or rather columns that have been made to look like tree trunks) you can tuck into stewed bull’s tail so tender it falls off your fork, succulent roasted pork, or turbot in champagne, to name just three of the house specialties. Unlike most other traditional Spanish menus, Arbol Blanco’s offers a smattering of international dishes too, such as spaghetti bolognese or curried scallops. The homemade desserts are highly-rated, and the service is friendly and efficient.