In summer, we look for the best beaches, the best hotels, the best country cottages, and the best restaurants, and TripAdvisor, Booking, and Airbnb are just some of the platforms that help us find the best option. In addition to these sites, more and more we are turning to friends, acquaintances, and online reviews for their tips and recommendations as well. Today we’d like to share some of our own recommendations for seaside eateries with you, which we hope you’ll take into account the next time you’re looking for a great spot to grab a bite by the beach. Hopefully we’ll get it right, but if not, we’re open to suggestion. 😉
While we may not be experts in hotels, country cottages, or apartments, we do know good food and good wine. So here are our recommendations of five restaurants located in beach areas where you’ll be able to enjoy a nice meal and nice wine while enjoying views of the sea and sand. Maybe there are some you already know!
Far Nomo is part of the larger Grupo Nomo family, known for its Japanese restaurants in Barcelona, and this is the second summer this restaurant has occupied one of the best spots on the Costa Brava: the St. Sebastian lighthouse in Llafranc. Combining amazing views of Llafranc and Calella de Palafrugell with a painstakingly selected, elegant, and delicious Japanese menu, it can be very difficult to get a table here, especially in August. We recommend calling ahead to reserve. If they make you wait, it will surely be easier with a glass of Jean Leon 3055 Chardonnay in your hand. 😉
Jani, another member of the Grupo Nomo family, stands right in the center of Llafranc, on the waterfront. It’s the first restaurant where they’ve left Japanese cuisine behind completely, to experiment with Mediterranean cooking instead – an experiment that’s going very well for them. Its specialties, including tuna croquettes and creamy rice dishes made using local rice from Pals, make it a sure bet. Definitely an option worth considering!
We’re going from Japanese to Italian with a restaurant that’s just opened its doors in Calella de Palafrugell. The famous Isabella’s on Carrer de Ganduxer in Barcelona has taken a chance on the Costa Brava with this small restaurant located in the neighborhood of Sant Roc. It’s a cozy space with a large menu where fish is the star ingredient. This is its first summer on the waterfront and, so far this month, they’re doing very well. Besides fresh fish, other standouts are the typical Italian dishes Isabella’s is known for, such as pasta and risotto. Buon appetito!
We stay on the Costa Brava to next tell you about the restaurant Toc al Mar, located in Aiguablava, next to Begur, right at the foot of the beach. It specializes in fish grilled over a wood fire using holm oak: gilthead seabream, sea bass, red porgy, white seabream, meagre, little scorpionfish, real spiny lobster from the Cape of Begur, freshly caught shrimp from Palamós, octopus with romesco sauce… These are just some of the seafood delicacies you can try. The rice dishes have also gotten rave reviews, with the standouts being the Toc al Mar paella, the rice in broth with lobster and creamy shrimp rice. Delicious!
From the Costa Brava, we travel further south to the Garraf coast, specifically Vilanova i la Geltrú, to introduce you to the restaurant La Cucanya. Their menu focuses heavily on seafood, with local produce of the highest quality. Besides the shrimp from Vilanova, another highlight is the all cremat, a traditional local fish stew. This is a popular dish eaten all year round where the main ingredients are the catch of the day, potatoes, vegetables, and garlic – simple yet delicious!
We hope you’ve enjoyed this little gastronomic selection designed for those hot summer days where there’s time for having fun, disconnecting, relaxing, and eating well, all in equal measures. We’d be happy to hear your suggestions to consider them in future posts on the blog. Enjoy!