It’s amazing how history clashes with the modern upbeat tempo in Southern Europe. Densely populated cities don’t feel crowded in the slightest, giving way to this unique convergence of old and new. Just look at Seville with its distinct Roman/Spanish ancestry and a knack for innovation. With a map in one hand and a Michelin guide in the other – we are going to visit five great Sevillian restaurants to see and taste this mixture first hand.
The crown jewel of our list and the single bearer of a Michelin star in Seville – Abantal is simply a must! Guided by the award-winning chef Julio Fernández Quintero the place offers a variety of carefully prepared seasonal dishes with an unorthodox approach. This creative yet traditional delivery combined with the simplistic modernist décor of the restaurant has made it such a sensation. Fun fact, even the name “Abantal” – an old Castillian word for “apron” – highlights the artistic attitude of the spot.
The menu is a mixture of meat and seafood-based dishes, typical for the area, with a variety of quite peculiar items. Abantal’s oysters and rabbit served with hummus, bittersweet quince and wild mushrooms are simply masterpieces! The Atlantic cod with mackerel, seaweeds and black olives as served here can boast of a unique flavor and texture and goes well with a glass of selected white wine from the restaurant's cellar. Oh, and the yogurt foam with raspberries, lime, and mint sorbet is perfect for dessert!
A beautiful 19th-century mansion on Zaragoza doubles as a stylish 7-room hotel, making it an ideal place to start from. The restaurant opened its doors in 1992 quickly becoming one of the go-to places to try traditional Sevillian flavors. Folks at Michelin praise the authentic ambiance of the place, the top-notch service and the updated twist of the menu.
Indeed, there are plenty of dishes to choose from – from a bowl of refreshing yet fulfilling salmorejo to a plate of delicious scallops. Treat yourself with a portion of foie gras, served with special lemon sauce! Seafood enthusiasts will be pleased with tender locally produced lobster. At the nightfall, the adjacent patio becomes a perfect place for a romantic outdoor dinner with a great selection of wines and cheeses. The menu is far from being cheap though, but the service and especially the décor of the place is worth every single penny.
Now here’s a true piece of history. How often do you have a chance to dine at a restaurant founded in the late 17th century? El Rinconcillo is such a place. A Michelin verdict “simply a good meal” doesn’t really do justice to the restaurant as in this case the place not only serves traditional Andalusian-Mozarabic cuisine but has also helped to shape that very culinary tradition.
Surprisingly enough the place is not snobbish in the slightest, gravitating towards a more homely approach. Everything, from delicious appetizers and heavenly tapas to more substantial meals like tender venison or smoked and grilled cod is designed to accommodate any taste or budget imaginable. Those willing to stick to Sevillian roots will find Iberian pork cheeks with creamy rice and stuffed eggplants incredibly satisfying. A good selection of local and imported wines adds to the picture making El Rinconcillo an ideal place for a special occasion.
Next stop – a fantastic little place on San Fernando called Oriza. Michelin guide inspectors highlight the impressive winter garden style of the restaurant and the Basque-inspired menu. The staff is prompt and attentive and the dishes are cooked with fresh and raw locally grown produce.
Even if you’re not that hungry, your stomach will start to growl straight from the doors – guaranteed. Try the chef’s tartare, crispy suckling pig, served with sautéed cauliflower and green peppers, citrus compote and Moscatel sweet wine – you’ll get what I mean. The seafood part of the menu is great too with halibut, lobster salad, and hake being exceptionally good. What really singles out the place is the creative pastry menu, bordering on avant-garde and making any dining experience at Oriza truly unique.
What makes a good seafood restaurant? Fresh-off-the-boat ingredients, skilled chefs, charming atmosphere? Well, Manolo Vázquez offers just that and then some. The Michelin Guide praises this traditional Andalusian restaurant for its delivery but highlights the predominantly business clientele of the place. Rightly so, located on the busy Baltasar Gracián street in the city center, it is ideal for a business lunch.
They serve fantastic shellfish here, with clams and mussels coming straight from the Huelva coast. The fish steaks with rice and steamed vegetables are amazingly delicious as well. The place can satisfy a meat lover as well with pork chops and croquettes always on the menu. With all that said, the place is not that popular with tourists from abroad yet, which makes it a real hidden gem for any traveling foodie.
There are many more great restaurants in Seville, with a large number included in the Michelin selection, but this small list should do for now. Just remember to try and experiment, for Seville has so many secrets for you to uncover, and as they say in Spain: la comida reposada y la cena paseada.