Valencia is a city that offers a wide range of delicious dining options, with numerous restaurants serving traditional regional dishes at affordable prices. Here are four standout establishments that are sure to satisfy your taste buds during your visit to this charming Spanish city.

La Riuà

La Riuà is a family-owned restaurant that specializes in traditional, home-style Valencian cuisine. This popular spot is a favorite among locals and is well worth a visit for those seeking authentic flavors.

Must-Try Dishes

  1. Paella Valenciana: This iconic dish, when properly prepared, features a rich, deep ochre-colored rice cooked with chicken, rabbit, broad beans, lima beans, and spices. It’s reminiscent of the Jambalaya found in Gonzales, Louisiana.
  2. Arroz Caldoso de Bogavante: This lobster soup with rice is another specialty at La Riuà, offering a taste similar to crawfish stew.
  3. Seafood Fritters with Mayo: Even the appetizers here are noteworthy, with the seafood fritters being a particular standout.

Location and Tips

La Riuà is located at Calle del Mar, 27 in the Viutat Vella, just a short walk from Barri el Carme and the Valencia Cathedral. The restaurant opens at 2:00 pm for lunch, and while reservations may not be necessary if you arrive close to opening time, keep in mind that this is a popular spot and tables fill up quickly.

When ordering the paella or rice dishes, be prepared for a wait time of about 30 minutes, as these dishes are cooked to order and are available for a minimum of two people.

La Pilareta (Bar el Pilar)

La Pilareta, also known as Bar el Pilar, is a small, rustic corner bar that is famous for its fresh clochinas (or cloxinas), which are Mediterranean mussels. This cozy spot is perfect for relaxing with a glass of wine and sampling some delectable tapas.

Recommended Tapas

  1. Chorizo Montaditos: These open sandwiches feature flavorful chorizo sausage and are a must-try.
  2. Lomo Montaditos: Another tasty option, these montaditos showcase succulent pork loin.

Finding La Pilareta

La Pilareta is situated at Calle del Moro Zeit, 13, at the intersection of Moro Zeit and Calle Conquista. It’s less than a 10-minute walk from the Torres de Quart and conveniently located just around the corner from another notable eatery, Sidreria el Molinón.

Sidreria el Molinón

Sidreria el Molinón is another excellent choice for tapas and drinks, albeit slightly pricier than some other options. The menu here is inspired by the cuisine of northern Spain and, as the name suggests, includes the popular sidra (apple cider).

Tapas to Savor

  1. Verdel Ahumado: This smoked mackerel in oil, served with crushed tomatoes, is a flavorful and satisfying choice.
  2. Mont. Cabrales: For cheese lovers, these blue cheese montaditos are a must.
  3. M. Pate Morcilla: Don’t miss the opportunity to try these delightful blackpudding montaditos.

Sweet Treat

Be sure to save room for dessert, as Sidreria el Molinón serves a delicious Tarta de Santiago, a simple yet delectable Galician almond cake.

Where to Find It

Sidreria el Molinón is located at Carrer de Bolsería, 40, making it easy to visit in conjunction with La Pilareta.

Horchateria Daniel

For a unique and refreshing treat, head to Horchateria Daniel, a classic ice cream parlor that was once a favorite of Catalan artist Salvador Dalí. Today, it remains popular with both locals and travelers alike.

Specialty Beverage

The star of the show at Horchateria Daniel is the horchata de chufa, a sweet, slightly nutty-flavored milky beverage made from chufas (tiger nuts). This traditional Valencian drink is a must-try during your visit.

Frozen Delights

Along With the classic chilled horchata, Horchateria Daniel offers a variety of frozen horchata-based desserts in different flavors. One standout is the Crema de Daniel, a simple yet incredibly tasty ice cream version of horchata.

Location and Access

Horchateria Daniel is located at Avinguda de l’Orxata, 41 in the nearby town of Alboraya. To reach it, simply take the Metro (Linea 3) from Valencia’s old town. The ice cream parlor is directly across the street from the Alboraya-Palmaret Metro stop, making it easily accessible. A single-zone ticket from the Valencia old town should suffice for the journey.

Exploring Valencia’s Culinary Scene

Valencia’s diverse culinary scene offers something for every palate, from traditional Valencian dishes to innovative tapas and refreshing desserts. As you explore the city, be sure to seek out these recommended restaurants and bars to experience the authentic flavors of the region.

Along With the eateries mentioned above, don’t hesitate to venture off the beaten path and discover hidden gems tucked away in the city’s charming streets and alleys. Valencia’s food culture is deeply rooted in its history and geography, with fresh seafood, locally grown produce, and time-honored recipes playing starring roles.

As you savor each bite, take a moment to appreciate the passion and skill that goes into preparing these dishes. Many of Valencia’s restaurants are family-owned and have been perfecting their craft for generations, ensuring that every plate is a celebration of the region’s culinary heritage.

When dining out in Valencia, remember to embrace the local customs and pace. Lunch is typically the largest meal of the day and is often enjoyed at a leisurely pace, with multiple courses and plenty of conversation. Dinner tends to be lighter and is served later in the evening, often beginning around 9:00 pm or even later.

Finally, don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try new dishes and flavors. Valencia’s culinary scene is full of pleasant surprises, from the comforting warmth of a perfectly prepared paella to the unexpected delight of a creamy, horchata-based dessert. By keeping an open mind and an adventurous spirit, you’ll be sure to discover new favorites and create lasting culinary memories during your visit to this captivating Spanish city.

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