Top Paella Restaurants on the Costa Brava

Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella | © Manuel M. Vicente/WikiCommons
Esme Fox

Paella is not typically associated with Catalan cuisine – it originated from the region of Valencia further south. However, you can still find many excellent seafood restaurants along the Costa Brava, offering this delectable, saffron-infused rice dish served in wide metal pans. Here’s our round-up of the best paella restaurants on the Costa Brava.

1. Els Pescadors

Restaurant, Spanish, Mediterranean

Once an old tavern on the seafront in Llança, Els Pescadors has been owned by the Fernández-Punset family for the past three decades. Today it has become one of the most creative seafood restaurants on the Costa Brava. The restaurant is headed up by Chef Lluís Fernández Punset, who trained in some of the world’s greatest kitchens, including El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Akelarre in San Sebastian and L’Abac in Barcelona. All the food is sourced from the local fish market in Llança, and the menu changes according to the season. Various rice dishes feature on the menu and they also have their own wine cellar filled with over 200 different varieties.

2. Can Flores

Restaurant, Spanish, Seafood

Located in the port of Blanes, this restaurant sits no more than 100 meters from the town’s fish market, ensuring the highest quality and freshest fish is available. Having been around since 1958, they know their stuff when it comes to seafood. The menu features tapas plates for sharing, lobster, Galician-style octopus, traditional Catalan fish stew, and, of course, paella.

3. Sodemar

Restaurant, Spanish, Seafood

Located right next to the marina in Roses, Sodemar offers spectacular sea views and delicious seafood to match. They specialize in rice and fideuá (Catalan-style paellas made with short noodles instead of rice) dishes, as well as lobster from the Cap de Creus National Park and fresh shellfish. Ask for fresh fish any way you want it, and they’ll likely provide.

4. Totsompops

Restaurant with Rooms, Spanish

A funky hostel, shop and restaurant in one, Totsompops can be found in the small town of Colera. The jewels of their mostly traditional Catalan menu are their rice dishes made with wild mushrooms, sausages, crab or other seasonal ingredients. Take a look in the shop after lunch to stock up on homemade treats such as fruit jams, honeys, marinated anchovies and smoked sardines.

5. Restaurant Els Valencians

Restaurant, Spanish, Mediterranean

Situated in the village of L’Estartit, this simple-looking restaurant focuses on the classic and traditional Valencian-style paella, featuring both meat and seafood. Fideuás, arroz a banda (blind rice) and various other rice and seafood dishes are also available. Get here during the middle of the day and you can opt for their reasonably-priced menu of the day, which usually features some type of paella, a starter and dessert.

6. Restaurant Can Pini

Restaurant, Spanish, Mediterranean

This cosy restaurant with vaulted-arched ceilings and exposed brick walls is located in the popular resort town of Tossa del Mar. A typical tavern-like restaurant from the outside, it serves up deliciously fresh seafood such as steamed cockles and rock mussels, calamari and lobsters. The star of the show here though is the ‘paella de señorita’ where everything comes perfectly cooked, peeled and ready to eat, on a bed of fragrant saffron rice.

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