Seville Travel Guide


Restaurants here are more expensive than most in Spain, but even around the cathedral and the Barrio Santa Cruz, there are few places that can simply be dismissed as tourist traps. Remember that in the evening the 'sevillanos', even more than most Andalusians, enjoy bar-hopping for tapas, rather than sitting down to one meal; two Sevillanos in a bar is a party, three is a fiesta!

Not many restaurants here have attractions beyond the cuisine: La Albahaca, Plaza Santa Cruz, (95 4220714), has tables outside, artwork on its crockery and three dining rooms, creating a romantic and relaxing atmosphere. Specialities include scorpion fish with peanuts and fennel; mushrooms with green asparagus; partridge with endives. Prices start at around 4,000 pts per head (closed Sunday).

Splendidly situated on the corner of the Jardines Alcazar, opposite the university, is one of Seville's best-loved restaurants, the Egana-Oriza, San Fernando 41, (95 422 7211). It serves the best of Andaluz and Basque cuisine. Included among its tempting delights are: spider crab mousse and escalope of goose in pear sauce. The restaurant also has the separately run Bar Espana for good fish and salad tapas.

North of the Giralda, you can dine well on French and Italian specialities at San Marco, Cuno 6 (95 421 2440) in a large old elegantly decorated sevillana house; try the ravioli stuffed with sea bass, crayfish salad or tournedos of duck foie gras.

By the cathedral in the narrow Argote de Monina is Meson Don Raimundo, a restaurant in what was once a convent. No enforced abstinence here, though. You can enjoy a large selection of fish, shellfish and game dishes amid an eclectic decor of religious artefacts and suits of armour.

Along the Triana side of the Guadalquivir, you can dine with a view of the Torre del Oro and La Giralda at the restaurant Rio Grande, Calle Betis, s/n (95 427 3956). The kitchen here specialises in regional cuisine, and on a Sunday afternoon if there's a good corrida you can join in the roars of ole that erupt from the bullring on the opposite bank. Along from here is Ox's, Calle Betis, 61 (95 427 9585) with Basque novelties - cod stuffed peppers and fish and steaks.

Moderately Priced
La Barca, Placentines, 25 is good value for money, specialising in fish and seafood and Las Meninas on Calle Manara is also very good, with the same owner. The Bodegon Torre del Oro, Calle Santander 15 specialises in a hard fleshed fish called urta rotena which is caught locally. The three course lunch here costs 3,000 ptas and the raciones are good also.

Tapas bars are the best bet in Seville, if you don't want to spend too much. The Bodega La Andana, Argote de Molina is where many of the locals spill out onto the pavement, particularly at weekends. Around the corner you can eat well at the bar restaurant, Gonzalo which overlooks the Giralda. There's a reasonably priced and varied menu at Bar Giralda, Calle Mateos with a good selection of sherries.

Bar Modesto is a short stroll from the cathedral serving breakfast, raciones and full meals. Kiosko de las Flores serves light fish lunches of boquerones, among other things. The place is an informal cafe-bar, right by the Puente de Isabel 11, and part of it looks over the water. Prices are a little high, a glorified fishy snack with a drink costs 1,300 pts but it's well worth the little extra for the ambience and view.

One of the most atmospheric tapas bars is the El Rinconillo, Gerona 42 which dates back to 1670 and is decorated with bright tiles and ochre paint. There is a marvellous array of reasonable tapas here. This is where the locals gather to spend the evening in loud animated chatter. The staff, oblivious, chalk up the bill on the bar.

Seville's cheapest restaurants are located around Calle San Eloy. Particularly recommended are the marisocos bars in the small streets of Clle Tetuan and Calle Sierpes. The Antigua Bodequita is a find, tiny bar opposite the church on Plaza del Salvador, but if you just fancy cakes, coffee or ice cream head for La Campana on Calle Sierpes. Established in 1885, it's udoubtedly one of the quaintist cafes in the city.

As well as the tapas bars mentioned above, the following may be recommended in Seville - all are centrally located.

El Bacalao - Plaza Ponce de Leon, 15

Becerrita - Calle Hernando Colon 1

Bodega la Albariza - Calle Betis 6

Casa Manolo - Calle San Jorge 6

Casa Omana,Plaza de los Venerables 1

La Estrella, Calle Estrella 3

Modesto, Calle Cueto

Sol y Sombre, Calle Castilla 151

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