Did I mention how we decided to visit Bilbao in June, just to be hit by 12°C temperatures and icy drizzle?
Well, when Bilbao gives you rain, you have the option to sulk and bitch about it (I’ll give you 5 minutes for that). Or: you can go see some kick-ass museums, eat fantastic Basque food and just #raindontcare
Here’s an itinerary for two days in Bilbao to inspire you.
Visiting the Guggenheim was how we came across this super cute and cozy fish and seafood joint, some 10 mins away from Guggenheim, called La Taska de Isozaki.
You won’t find much about La Taska de Isozaki online – which is rare these days, especially for such a great little restaurant! The place is a real gem.
La Taska de Isozaki
Food is heavenly, prices are (as Spanish people would say) correct, and the only thing stopping you from overeating will be your own will power.
We got there at around 1.30pm, which qualifies as an early lunch by Spanish standards, so there were still some spots available at the high tables.
Make sure you’re there early, the restaurant is small and very popular among locals, so tables go fast.
Splurging on Goodies
Bread and small appetizers come free of charge, but I wholeheartedly recommend you also get a plate of caracolillos (sea snails) to share, while waiting for your food.
It’s the first time I ate sea snails and it was fun picking them from their shells with a needle, and happily drowning with some champagne.
But what surprised me is how unexpectedly filling they were.. who knew?
The whole plate is enough for 2 and comes at a only 4.5€ 🙂
Oh, the place is also stocked on a large variety of wines, and they also have shelf-priced champagne!
I mean, 38€ for a bottle of Taittinger?!
The squid was deliciously done and came with a slightly smoky paprika flavor; the choice won’t fail you.
But hey, if you want to go crazy with their seafood options, there plenty of options. Let me know how that went 😉
Not a seafood fan? Don’t write it off, because there’s also an unlikely – but excellent – combination of fried eggs with foie-gras and fries.
One of the many reasons I love Spain : breaking the Anglo-American tradition, you can eat fried eggs anytime – breakfast, lunch or dinner!
Bilbao’s culinary treat doesn’t end here, here’s another one for you:
Hogar del Pescador
A big typical fish restaurant, Hogar del Pescador is actually outside of Bilbao, but if you’re feeling like exploring, go to Santurzi.
You’ll find this typical restaurant smack in the middle of the harbor; you can’t miss it.
Though it doesn’t necessarily come cheap, everything is super fresh and judging by the amount of (mostly local) people crowding the place for lunch, it’s a safe bet you’ll have a great lunch/ dinner, especially if you go for the delicious sardines or the juicy squid (pulpo)
They grill the food just outside the restaurant, and their wines are quite decently priced.
Basque country has a rich culinary heritage, as this Huffington Post article rightfully describes. In their words, it’s no wonder then that today the region boasts almost 40 Michelin starred restaurants.
We all know Michelin starred restaurants can be pretty expensive, however, those in the Basque Country tend to cost much less than in other places.
That means you can get to eat at a one-star Michelin restaurant with 45-60 € /person while eating at a 3 stars restaurant will set you back only between 100-200€.
Who Needs Fancy Anyway
But even if you’re not one for fancy food like that, Bilbao will have plenty of options for you to splurge.
And there’s also that time we stuffed our faces with chips and chocolate from the hotel minibar – because the rain outside was just too dreadful. (though I would definitely not recommend it)
But if that’s your jam, by all means..
Do you have any favorite restaurants in Bilbao?
Let us all know, in the comment section below!