When you get to Seville, “Where can’t you eat?” That question is probably easier to answer than where you should go to eat. You’ll be spoiled for choice here, with the city’s stunning views adding the perfect finishing touch to any meal.
With some of the most impressive architecture in Europe, a well-deserved reputation for friendly locals, and almost permanent sunshine, it’s no surprise that Seville is a very popular destination for tourists and exchange students from all over the world.
What’s even more surprising to many who come to Spain’s fourth largest city is that you can eat so well here for so little money. In Seville, you can get a lot for a few euros, especially in the city’s tapas bars. Traditionally, you go from one bar to another, sampling a few tapas at each one before moving on to the next. It’s the easiest way to eat and the tastiest way to eat.
El Rinconcillo is a staple of Seville’s tapas scene, said to have been founded in 1670. The fact that a tapas restaurant has such staying power in a city full of restaurants is a testament to how good the food is here. The best seats here are actually standing at the bar, where you can watch waiters bring out small white plates at a dizzying pace, slide glasses across the bar, and count customers’ bills with chalk on the wooden countertop.
Calle Gerona, 40.
Bodega Dos de Mayo
You’ll find this traditional tavern in a quiet square just a few minutes’ walk from many of the main attractions, but it manages to stay out of the way of visitors. Open 365 days a year, the waiters are known for their friendliness and quickly serve up snacks and mains from a small kitchen. It’s a real treat to try the delicate honey-fried eggplant or creamy samolo soup, as well as any of the seafood options.
Gavidia Plaza, 6.
Dating back to 1880, Casa Cuesta occupies a coveted spot in front of the Guadalquivir River in the vibrant neighbourhood of Triana. It actually opened as a wine cellar, and today it still retains a wine list that impresses customers and much of its traditional decor. If you can, grab a table outside at lunchtime and enjoy the Seville sunshine while sampling tapas. Recommended dishes include braised pork cheeks and bonito cooked with garlic, oil and pepper.
Calle Castilla, 1
Tapas Viapol is located in the Nervión residential area just outside the historic city centre and is almost always packed with warmly chatting Barrio locals.For around 25 euros, you can enjoy a hearty homemade tapas for two, paired with a couple of glasses of top-notch wine. Standout dishes include mushrooms made with a rich béchamel sauce and salty Spanish ham, and pork loin topped with a tangy mustard sauce over fried potatoes.
José Recuerda Rubio Street, 5.
While the standard tapas bar can be crowded, Los Coloniales is spread over two spacious floors with plenty of tables. But there’s almost always a line to get in. It’s worth the wait, though, as you’d be hard-pressed to find cheaper food in Seville. Order the boiled chicken in almond sauce or the pork in port sauce with a selection of charcoal grilled meats to start your meal off on the right foot. They also have some great salads that are a welcome addition to any tapas menu.
Calle Dormitorio, 4
Taberna Sol y Sombra
The name of this bar comes from the tradition of bullfighting. When you buy bullfighting tickets, you can choose between cheap seats in the sun (sol) or expensive seats in the shade (sombra). Its walls are covered with posters of famous bullfights and bullfighters over the years, some even over the centuries. One of their most popular snacks is solomillo al ajo – pork in garlic sauce – they also have a wide selection of revueltos, or scrambled egg dishes.
Calle Castilla, 147, 149 and 151
Be careful what you buy at Eslava, there are two different restaurants here. While you’ll almost certainly eat well at both, you might get a little sticker shock if you accidentally choose a high-end restaurant over a tapas bar. Their signature dish is a soft, slow-cooked egg on a mushroom cake, drizzled with a luxurious caramelized wine sauce. The dish has won first prize in a citywide tapas competition, which is no small feat in Seville.
Calle Eslava, 3