Bilbao Restaurants

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Most Recent Restaurants in Bilbao

  • PrincessMonja's Profile Photo

    Restaurante Amarena: No Service, no smile!!!

    by PrincessMonja Written Mar 23, 2014
    Nice decor, shame about the service...
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    I had to review this restaurant, not because of the fabulous food and service, but because of the absolutely appalling service. It's so bad it's almost comedic!!

    Like several of the restaurants in this area, this restaurant does a midday menu (three courses, with wine, water and bread for about €19 per person). Now obviously the restaurant is busy, very busy, but even a glimmer of a smile would have been nice!!!

    The menu is barked at you, fortunately we speak Spanish, god knows what happens to the poor souls who don't! I explained to the waitress that I can't eat gluten, she said to start I would have the salad then, I then said I'd have the grilled sea bass for main, she replied "Do potatoes have gluten?" - well I have no problem with people not knowing which foods contain gluten (it's complicated after all!) but how could she know what I could have to start, if she doesn't know what gluten is in??

    Anyway... After the first course the waitress picked up the plate and threw, with some force, my husbands cutlery back on the table... The staff also seemed unable to see or respond to any requests other than those made in the initial order. I noted that this behaviour was exhibited with all the customers...

    Trying to get their attention ended up becoming a bit of a game, we had a real laugh in here, unfortunately for the wrong reasons!!!!

    Favorite Dish: The food was ok, quite pleasant. The main could have been warmer, and I would have liked some pepper to put on it (Let's face it that was never going to happen!!!)

    The restaurant does have lovely decor, and seating outside.

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    Plaza Nuevo bars: Pintxo hopping in Casco Viejo

    by lomi Updated Feb 5, 2014

    I soon discover, around the corner of my hotel, a quarry of shops with no traffic. Very Covent Garden. Gifts, clothes, shoes, tabac, correos, beads. Small friendly bars dotted around with tables and chairs outside with their parasols up against the sun of the hot August afternoon.

    I peruse menus at restaurants, I stop and listen to musicians, I stare up at old churches and the cathedral. I sniff the air, I can smell grilled chicken coming from an asedero. I admire the paseo, locals air kissing each other and chatting, tourists snapping with their ipads/cameras. Its August and fiesta is in the air.

    Its getting hot, I am hungry. I stumble upon Plaza Nuevo, buzzing with people sitting under bright parasols eating & drinking. I sat at the Bar Victor expectantly. I had read so much about the pintxos, now here I was oggling the display. How to make a choice ? a thick chunk of white goat cheese with onion marmalade & walnuts, or the jamon Serrano with a meat ball tottering on the surface speared with a grilled cherry tomatoe. Or the wedge of boiled egg, surrounded by 2 fat prawns & a sprinkle of black caviar. Or slow cooked calamari & thin slivers of shiny poached peppers.. Another of chopped Iberico pork with 2 quails eggs, sprinkled with fine grated Parmesan. I am salivating.

    I asked for a Txakoli white wine, (vino blanco seco) It has a low alcohol content, perfect for pintxo hopping. A local man is seated next to me wearing a beret, looking after his tiny grandson in a pushchair. I hear him order a copa de vino rojo grande. The waiter takes a bottle of red from a bucket of ice on the bar and a large glass. A lady with her knitting is sat on the other side of me, sipping Txakoli and when she hears me ask for it, raises her glass to me and says 'salud, Señora'. Good conversation openings.

    Next a few doors away is Bar, Charly. The waiter handed me a plate, I took a croquet stuffed with garlic pork, topped with a green pimento padrone, speared with a large juicy prawn. I am getting the hang of this. A glass of vino, a pintxo & you move to the next bar. The atmosphere is so relaxed. I can do this. I am sure there are as many tourists as locals, but I haven't yet heard an English voice. A live band is playing in the town square. Am I in urban heaven or a Txakoli haze?

    I like it that the locals celebrate their culture, people of all ages are just hanging out. There is a park and an ice-cream palour almost opposite the hotel, near the river. I sit and people watch, eating what is to become my favorite ice cream (almendre or almond) .

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  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Bar Basque: Where I Did Eat

    by johngayton Updated Jul 29, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    Admittedly I'd been kinda nervous about entering my first bar here. These are very much local's haunts, busy with people who have come to have a nibble and to read the morning's paper, shoppers stopping off for a respite from their retail therapy and have a natter or business folks conducting their meetings in a far more civilised environment than their boardrooms.

    The one I finally worked up the courage for was this one which was about half-full as I entered. A small group of business-types were clustered under the TV, a smart-suited single guy was reading his paper in the corner and a pair of elegantly-dressed grandish dames were craftily lacing their morning coffee with the local brandy whilst procuring freebies from the barman as the pintxos platters were being changed.

    The bar itself was stunning with its carved wooden-railed countertop, gleaming brasses, mirrored display shelves and little Art Deco touches such as the faux skylight in the ornately-molded wooden equally-faux ceiling - the building is three stories high!

    Favorite Dish: Not having my Spanish up to speed I had to do my "point and por favor" bit and ended with a delicously crunchy mini-baguette entitled "Bocadillo de Tortilla y Chorizo" which was a sort of brunch option being basically scrambled eggs with sausage. To accompany I had a quick espresso and then an equally-quick small beer and a total bill of about 5 Euros.

    Nice nibble but I had to get to dash back to catch my boat. I was impressed with this bar and particulary the moveable feast of customers that came and went during my short visit. The only bugger was was that just as I started to get comfortable it was time to leave and I realised that I actually do speak a little more Spanish than just "Por Favor" I just hadn't gotten focused - Ach, I could have said "Gracias" as well!

    UPDATE - A FB conversation now reveals that what I've described as "brunch" is in fact called "hamaiketako" in Basque - "mid-morning treat". Life is a continual education program which you don't have to step out of your armchair for - but getting out there helps.

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  • JessieLang's Profile Photo

    The Best hot chocolate: New York Cafe

    by JessieLang Written Apr 17, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    A local man said the New York Café had the best chocolate in town. He must be right, because it was incredible stuff. Spanish hot chocolate is nothing like ours in the states—it is very rich, and so thick it is barely liquid. They also had beautiful pastries and meringues, but the chocolate took priority.
    Cost: 2.50 euro.

    Favorite Dish: Hot Chocolate. I never got around to trying the pastries.

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  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    General Tip: Breakfast in Bilbao

    by johngayton Updated Feb 9, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This one Looked Interesting

    Not having done any research on what to expect foodwise here in Bilbao I kinda wasted most of my morning wandering and trying to get a feel for the city. What I should have done is totally ignored all the digressionary diversions of the visual scenery and concentrated instead on getting to grips with the culinary diversity offered by the myriad of tiny bars and cafes with which every street was liberally seeded.

    Every bar that I passed, or should I say every bar that caught my attention, were narrow one-room affairs whose counters were bedecked with colourful platters bearing the house's individual gastronomic specialities - pintxos (pinchos), the Basque Country's contribution to our ever-growing epicurian experience.

    This seems to be a truly moveable feast, and one that moves in all four of our earthly dimensions - not only do the delicacies on offer continually change as one platter gets eaten but so too do the constituents according to the time of day.

    Early-morning (well 8.30 am IS early here in Bilbao) the offerings were the sweeter, lighter things such as sugared pastries, chocolatines and fruity little tarts - all ideal for accompanying the morning's kick-start coffee. By mid-morning the sweeties were less in evidence as the tortillas took over and the first glass of wine, or small beer, of the day snuck in as an aperatif.

    Towards lunchtime the savoury evolution continued as the chorizos and jamons began to vie with the gambas and octopi and the beers and wines became ancillary necessities rather than mere appetisers.

    Unfortunately it was now time to head back to my boat and so I missed the rest of what could have been a very enjoyable culinary adventure ... but next time - Watch This Space!!

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  • SWFC_Fan's Profile Photo

    Ondartza Cafe: Local cafe bar in Getxo - good value wines!

    by SWFC_Fan Written Jan 27, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Ondartza Cafe, Getxo, Bilbao
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    We paid a brief visit to Ondartza Cafe in the Getxo region of Bilbao on New Year's Day 2013.

    We had just crossed Puente Colgante from Portugalete and were walking along Calle Mayor towards Areeta metro station to head back to the centre of Bilbao. The rain was falling and we decided to seek shelter and have a drink in one of several cafes clustered around a shopping precinct.

    Ondartza Cafe is small and cramped and was busy when we arrived around lunchtime. It had a very local feel to it; most of the clientele were elderly locals enjoying an afternoon drink and nibbling on the small selection of pintxos (Basque tapas) that were displayed on top of the bar.

    We squeezed into a small corner of the bar, at a tiny table located below a couple of chalk boards that acted as wine lists. There was a good selection of local red and white wines, particularly Txakoli (a slightly sparkling Basque white wine) and Rioja red wine.

    The wine prices were very competitive, with house wines at just €1.10 a glass and aged wines at just €1.50 and €1.60 a glass. Some of the wines were listed under the heading of "Crianza" and others under the heading of "Reserva", with the latter being slightly more expensive. I've since researched the two terms and discovered that Crianza red wines have been aged for at least 2 years (with at least 6 months in oak barrels) and Reserva red wines have been aged for at least 3 years (at least one of which was in an oak barrel). The definitions are different for white and rose wines.

    I started with a glass of Oxinbaltza Txakoli (€1.50). I had become fond of this white wine during our 5 days in Bilbao and found that it went down very easily. With the rain still falling, we were in no rush to head back outside, so we stayed for another drink. This time I opted for a glass of Marquesado Reserva Rioja (€1.60), a very enjoyable and slightly spicy red wine.

    Cafe Ondartza is a local cafe in the Getxo area of Bilbao with a good selection of reasonably priced local wines!

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    Gastro Bar Gozatu: Delicious omelettes on Plaza Nueva

    by SWFC_Fan Updated Jan 27, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Gastro Bar Gozatu, Plaza Nueva, Bilbao
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We visited Gastro Bar Gozatu on New Year's Day 2013. It was the only pintxos bar on Plaza Nueva that was open that day, and it wasn't very busy.

    Compared to the other pintxos bars on Plaza Nueva, Gozatu had a more modern and upmarket feel to it. Terming itself a "Gastro Bar" is probably a good indicator of the image it wishes to portray. The interior was spacious with modern decor; high stools at the bar and at various surfaces and tables dotted throughout the dining room, bright ceiling lights and a flat screen TV.

    The choice of pintxos on offer was rather sparse, but in fairness it was mid-morning on New Year's Day, it was the only place open and customers were relatively few. Anything is better than nothing!

    The choice of pintxos consisted of baguettes filled with Iberico ham and various tortillas (Spanish omelettes) filled with potato or tuna and resting on slices of crusty bread.

    I had a couple of potato omelettes (€2.00 each) and they were absolutely delicious. They were still warm and contained lots of egg and shredded potato. To accompany them, I opted for a glass of Rioja red wine at €2.10.

    On the strength of the wonderful omelettes, I'd have liked to have returned to Gastro Bar Gozatu when it was busier and serving a more extensive range of pintxos, but unfortunately it was our final day in Bilbao so we never got chance to go back.

    A modern, upmarket pintxos bar (or Gastro Bar!) on Plaza Nueva. Their omelettes are delicious!

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    Restaurante Bar Victor: Drinks and desserts on Plaza Nueva

    by SWFC_Fan Updated Jan 27, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Restaurante Bar Victor, Plaza Nueva, Bilbao
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We visited Restaurante Bar Victor (not to be confused with nearby Victor Montes Bar) late on a Saturday evening. It was close to closing time and the evening crowds had started to disperse; we practically had the bar to ourselves.

    As the crowds had thinned, so too had the displays of pintxos; they were pretty much depleted by this stage of the evening. There were a few remaining on the counter at Bar Victor and, unlike at the other pintxos bars we had visited in the square, they were of a sweet rather than savoury nature. This was the perfect place to end the evening with drinks and a dessert!

    The sweet pintxos were more expensive than their savoury counterparts; I paid €2.70 for a delicious custard tart and Emma paid €2.40 for a large slab of creme caramel topped with orange sauce which she really enjoyed.

    Drinks were reasonably priced with glasses of Txakoli wine (a slightly sparkling Basque white wine) costing €1.90 and cups of coffee and tea costing €1.70 each.

    We visited Bar Victor late in the evening; at other times of the day, the restaurant offers savoury pintxos and set menu meals. You can see a sample of their menu on their website HERE - the prices appear steep, but do include lots of seafood, beef and alcoholic beverages.

    A good place for drinks and desserts on Plaza Nueva!

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    Victor Montes: Upmarket pintxos bar on Plaza Nueva

    by SWFC_Fan Written Jan 27, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Victor Montes pintxos bar, Plaza Nueva, Bilbao
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We visited Victor Montes Bar on a Saturday evening. It was busy and lively (as all the pintxos bars on Plaza Nueva were that evening) and we battled our way through the crowds to get to the bar. Victor Montes always looked a little bit more sophisticated and upmarket than the other bars on Plaza Nueva (maybe it was just the ornate signage), but the atmosphere inside was pretty much the same as at the other surrounding eateries.

    This was perhaps the busiest bar that we visited in Bilbao. There were large crowds standing outside the bar, while inside was standing room only (and not very much at that!). The ground floor was sub-divided with the pintxos bar on one side and a more formal sit down restaurant on the other side. We stayed in the pintxos bar side and stood shoulder to shoulder at the bar while we chose our drinks and pintxos. It was a little uncomfortable, more so than at any other pintxos bar we visited, and we struggled to move along the bar to see the displays of pintxos.

    When we did manage to see the pintxos, they were largely bread-based; lots of sandwiches and baguettes, filled or topped with seafood, meat, cheese, peppers, tomatoes, anchovies and chorizo. There was a particularly good selection of breads topped with various cheeses (including brie and stilton) and walnuts and lots of seafood mayonnaise options.

    The pintxos (Basque tapas) were priced between €1.50 and €2.00 each and glasses of Txakoli wine (a slightly sparkling Basque white wine) were a similar price.

    I had a couple of pintxos:

    The first one was a slice of crusty bread topped with a generous portion of egg and seafood mayonnaise.

    The second one was a mini croissant filled with prawn and crab mayonnaise.

    The were both enjoyable (and went well with the glass of Txakoli I ordered), but both were pretty standard pintxos, nothing special, and were less creative than some of the offerings at other nearby pintxos bars.

    We could see into the sit down restaurant part from where we were standing and the food looked very good. We could also smell the food being served, and it certainly whetted the appetite! Emma's parents were particularly keen to try the oxtail stew that was being served. We asked one of the waiting staff for a menu so that we could see whether it would be worth returning another evening for a proper meal. The prices were very steep. A set 3 course meal was around €50 per person. We resolved to stick to the cheaper pintxos side of the restaurant!

    One of the more upmarket pintxos bar on Plaza Nueva, but still with a lively atmosphere and some good value pintxos and Txakoli wine! The sit down part of the restaurant is relatively expensive.

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    Cafe Panko: Cafe with eclectic pintxos near Plaza Moyua

    by SWFC_Fan Updated Jan 26, 2013

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    Cafe Panko, Bilbao
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    We ate at Cafe Panko one evening during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012.

    Cafe Panko is located on Marques del Puerto, just a couple of minutes walk from Moyua metro station and the popular Plaza Moyua square.

    I'll be honest, I didn't really want to eat at Cafe Panko. I was in Bilbao, home to hundreds of traditional pintxos bars, and I wanted to undertake a crawl of them, eating various local delicacies on my way. However, my girlfriend's parents wanted to have a proper sit down meal, something more substantial than pintxos, so we compromised and made our way inside.

    Peering through the windows from the outside, Cafe Panko had looked a bit pretentious for my liking. It was bright and modern, the clientele looked smartly dressed and the place looked more like a patisserie or a bakery than a restaurant.

    It was busy, but the waiter pulled out all the stops to find us a table. We had to wait for 15 or 20 minutes until the kitchen started serving hot meals at 8pm.

    We ordered drinks while we waited. Emma's dad and I ordered jugs of beer (great value at just €4.50 each for around four glasses of beer in each jug). The waiter brought us a jug between us and then brought a second jug for us to share part way through the meal. This made more sense than having two jugs on the table at once. Emma and her mum shared a bottle of 2008 Navarrsotillo Rioja Crianza red wine (€12).

    The menu wasn't particularly extensive, but featured a selection of salads, sandwiches, soups, burgers, pizza and a few meat and fish dishes.

    Emma's parents both opted for the steak (€15), which came served coated in breadcrumbs with an accompanying cheese sauce.

    Emma and I decided to share a platter of 8 pintxos (€12) as we figured it would fill a gap while leaving room for a pintxos bar crawl later in the evening. We didn't know whether we could choose the pintxos ourselves (there was a small selection displayed on top of the bar) or whether we would be served with a pre-chosen selection. It was the latter – but it was an impressive and eclectic selection that was presented to us:

    A mini burger with melted cheese in a toasted breadcake. The burger was a little rarer than either of us would usually order, but it was very nice.
    A bowl of Japanese-style noodles with soy sauce, tofu and beef.
    A bowl of fried rice with pork belly meat and vegetables.
    A small slice of bread topped with goats cheese and cranberry sauce.
    A skewer of beef and mushrooms in a light batter.
    A chicken teriyaki skewer with an accompanying cheese sauce.
    A bowl of chicken curry and rice.
    A piece of bacalau (codfish) in a cheese sauce.

    All of the dishes were tasty and well presented and the platter as a whole contained a good mixture of meat and seafood, local and oriental flavours. It wasn't what we had been expecting, but it was a nice change from the traditional Basque pintxos we'd been eating throughout our trip. At just €1.50 per dish, the prices also compared favourably with many of the pintxos bars in Bilbao; I hadn't been expecting that either!

    I hadn't been hopeful of having an enjoyable meal (or good value for money) at Cafe Panko...but I was wrong on both counts!

    A tasty selection of eclectic pintxos and great value jugs of beer! Much better than I had been expecting!

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    Bar Charly: Pintxos and wine in a local bar on Plaza Nueva

    by SWFC_Fan Written Jan 26, 2013

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    Bar Charly, Plaza Nueva, Bilbao
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We visited Bar Charly on a Saturday evening. We'd already had a substantial meal that evening, but still had room for a few pintxos and drinks.

    Bar Charly was busy that evening (as were all the pintxos bars in Plaza Nueva), but most people were standing out front, so we managed to get a table without any difficulty. Compared to many of the other pintxos bars on the square, Bar Charly felt more local than touristy and had a simpler, no-frills interior. That's not to say that the other places felt touristy; they didn't, at least not in December, it's just that Bar Charly felt particularly local.

    A TV in the corner of the bar was showing the final stages of a football friendly game between the Basque National Team and Bolivia which was being played in nearby San Sebastian. I watched with interest as the local side completed a comprehensive 6-1 victory.

    There was a reasonable spread of pintxos displayed on the bar, including various sandwiches, Spanish omelettes, cherry tomatoes, "gildas" (skewers of olives, peppers and anchovies), prawns, fish, cheese, ham and chorizo. There was also a sign advertising glasses of Txakoli wine (a slightly sparkling Basque white wine) and local Rioja red wine for €1.60 a glass – this proved impossible to resist! We ordered 3 glasses of Txakoli and a coffee con leche (the latter costing €1.35).

    The pintxos were priced at €1.80 each – we picked a couple of particularly tempting looking slices of bread topped with huge wedges of brie, walnuts and cranberry sauce and a hotdog bun filled with a large chorizo sausage.

    Good value pintxos...and Txakoli and Rioja wines...in a local bar on Plaza Nueva in the heart of Bilbao's old town!

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    Bar Urdina: Good selection of pintxos on Plaza Nueva

    by SWFC_Fan Written Jan 26, 2013

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    Bar Urdina, Plaza Nueva, Bilbao
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We visited Bar Urdina on a Saturday lunchtime. It was fairly busy, but not so crowded as to prevent us from walking along the length of its long bar studying the extensive choice of pintxos before making our selections.

    We had just visited the nearby Taberna Plaza Nueva (see separate tip) and compared to there, Bar Urdina's pintxos were not as creative and its staff not as welcoming and friendly.

    The choice of pintxos was certainly extensive; dozens of plates filled with sandwiches, bread topped with eggs, seafood, meats, skewers of chilli peppers, garlic and olives, battered chicken wings, hams and cheeses. There were enough options to satisfy most people's tastes, they just lacked that creative spark that Taberna Plaza Nueva offered.

    Unlike at Taberna Plaza Nueva, where the barman had been talkative and friendly and practically insisted on explaining each unique pintxos to us, the staff here pretty much ignored us as we struggled to identify what each item contained. Perhaps we should have asked them, maybe they'd have been happy to help us, but in the event we each selected a few pintxos and paid for them.

    There weren't many tables inside and the bar was largely covered in plates of pintxos, so we made our way outside and sat at an outdoor table on the fringe of Plaza Nueva square. It began to rain a little, but this wasn't a problem as the perimeter of the square is sheltered thanks to its porticoed architecture.

    I chose three pintxos (€1.60 each) and a glass of Mahou beer (€2.10). The pintxos were as follows:

    The first one consisted of a slice of crusty bread, topped with a seafood and egg mayonnaise and a spoonful of fish roe.

    The second one consisted of a slice of crusty bread, topped with egg and cheese mayonnaise, some sort of tomato salsa and a greasy, salty anchovy.

    The third one consisted of a slice of crusty bread, topped with a slice of Iberico ham, a good sized wedge of brie and another greasy, salty (but delicious!) anchovy.

    All three of the pintxos were tasty and were good value for money (a total bill of €6.90 for three pintxos and a beer). They were just a little underwhelming (and unexciting) compared to the ones we'd just enjoyed at nearby Taberna Plaza Nueva. Don't let that put you off though; the beauty of pintxos bars is that you can eat a little at each of them!

    A good choice of pintxos on Plaza Nueva in the heart of Casco Viejo. The pintxos here are, in my opinion, less creative than at some other nearby places, but they're still tasty and good value for money!

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    Taberna Plaza Nueva: Unique pintxos on Plaza Nueva

    by SWFC_Fan Written Jan 26, 2013

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    Taberna Plaza Nueva, Bilbao
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We first visited Taberna Plaza Nueva on a Friday evening. It was busy and lively (as all the pintxos bars on Plaza Nueva were that evening) and we battled our way through the crowds to get to the bar.

    It was our first full day in Bilbao; a day which had seen us visit, and eat in, several pintxos bars already. The pintxos on display all along the top of the bar at Taberna Plaza Nueva were the most creative that I had seen so far (and indeed were amongst the most creative that I sampled during our whole stay in the Basque country).

    We'd already eaten on that Friday evening, so we were only there to sample the atmosphere and enjoy drinks (3 glasses of Basque Txakoli wine and a glass of beer cost €6.90) – but I'd been suitably impressed with the display of pintxos to know that we'd be back to eat the following day!

    If the pintxos were impressive on the Friday evening, they were even more so when we returned at lunchtime the next day. While Friday night's display had been somewhat depleted, when we arrived on Saturday lunchtime we found a replenished spread of nibbles and a much less crowded bar to enjoy them in.

    Despite tables being available inside the bar, we preferred to follow the locals and perch ourselves on stools at the bar, picking up individual pintxos and eating them while studying the rest of the options and planning our next foray into the world of pintxos!

    The barman at Taberna Plaza Nueva spoke English very well and was happy to talk us through what each pintxos consisted of. This was particularly useful as some of the creations contained all sorts of ingredients and it wasn't evident from their appearance exactly what they were. So, the barman was able to steer Emma away from anything that contained seafood and was able to explain to me that the odd brown round-shaped pintxos that I was eyeing up was morcilla (black pudding) with melted chocolate, raspberry sauce and a pastry crust.

    We each ordered a glass of Basque Txakoli wine (€1.60 per glass) and then began to select a sample of the pintxos.

    I started with a very impressive looking pintxos that I had first spotted the previous evening (see photo #4). It stood tall, on a skewer, and was clearly topped with a prawn in tempura batter. The barman talked me through the other layers of this complex nibble. As with many of the pintxos, its base was a round slice of crusty bread. This was then topped with a slice of smoked pork meat, then a semi-melted goats cheese and a chunk of chorizo. It was delicious, and well worth the €1.80 that it cost.

    My second pintxos wasn't as visually impressive, but was just as tasty. It consisted of a skewer with two items coated in a light tempura batter. The barman has already told us that the battered items were prawn and octopus, so I happily tucked in.

    I ended this pintxos session with the odd black pudding/chocolate/raspberry combo that the barman had pointed out to us; a wheel of pastry containing a burger shaped slice of morcilla, an inner lining of raspberry sauce and a covering of melted chocolate (see photo #5). It was surprisingly very nice!

    The extensive choice of other pintxos included skewers of mushrooms, bread topped with duck and cranberry sauce, local hams and cheeses, goats cheese with pineapple, various mini sandwiches filled with meats and seafood, chicken, crab and fish.

    Each of the pintxos was priced at €1.80, so our total bill for 4 glasses of Txakoli wine and 10 pintxos between us was a very reasonable €24.40.

    Taberna Plaza Nueva was one of my favourite pintxos bars in Bilbao. It enjoys an ideal location on Plaza Nueva, the bustling square at the centre of Bilbao's old town, offers friendly service, good value prices and an extensive selection of pintxos that were amongst the most creative and tasty that we experienced throughout our stay in Bilbao.

    Taberna Plaza Nueva – a wonderful pintxos bar in the heart of Bilbao's Casco Viejo district. Unique and tasty creations, friendly service and a bustling atmosphere. Highly recommended!

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    Cafe Bar Bilbao: Popular pintxos bar on Plaza Nueva, Casco Viejo

    by SWFC_Fan Written Jan 26, 2013

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    Cafe Bar Bilbao, Plaza Nueva, Casco Viejo
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    If you're looking for busy pintxos bars with lots of atmosphere in Bilbao, Plaza Nueva is a good place to start. This small enclosed square, a couple of minutes walk from Casco Viejo metro station, hosts a number of popular little bars with counter-tops full of tasty pintxos, free-flowing Txakoli wine and tables spilling out into the square.

    We visited most of them during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012; both in the evening and during the daytime.

    We visited Cafe Bar Bilbao on a Friday evening. It was busy and lively, but most of the people there preferred to stand around the bar or outside in the square, so we were able to sit at a vacant table.

    Cafe Bar Bilbao dates back to 1911 (before being restored in 1992) and features ornate flooring, tiling and ceilings. This is exactly the kind of place I had in mind when I was reading about Bilbao's traditional pintxos bars prior to our trip.

    Unfortunately, we'd already eaten on the evening that we visited Cafe Bar Bilbao so, as tasty as the pintxos looked (Spanish omelettes, bread topped with hams, cheeses, prawns, fish and vegetables), we only had drinks.

    2 coffees, 1 tea and, for me, a glass of Txakoli wine (the local Basque white wine) cost €5.90. We soaked up the atmosphere while enjoying our drinks and, was it not for the fact that Bilbao has hundreds (perhaps thousands!) of pintxos bars to eat in, we'd have come back again to sample the food.

    You can get a good idea of the pintxos on offer (complete with pictures) on the bar's website HERE.

    Cafe Bar Bilbao – a lively and traditional pintxos bar on Plaza Nueva in the heart of Casco Viejo, Bilbao's old town. Be sure to pay a visit!

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    Café & Té: Pleasant cafe on Plaza Moyua

    by SWFC_Fan Updated Jan 16, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Caf�� & T��, Bilbao
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    We visited Café & Té on a couple of occasions during our stay in Bilbao in December 2012.

    It's a pleasant cafe with an extensive menu of coffees, teas and other hot beverages, cakes, pastries, sandwiches, Spanish omelettes and other snacks. It is located on Plaza Moyua, right next to the Metro entrance, close to Hotel Carlton, and is an ideal place to grab a quick breakfast.

    On our first visit we enjoyed the churros con chocolate (€3.60); a glass of hot melted chocolate and a plate full of doughtnut sticks covered in sugar for dipping into the chocolate.

    On our second visit we just had drinks. I ordered an espresso (€1.50) and was given the choice of various coffees; Ethiopian, Brazilian, Colombian, Jamaican, Kenyan, Guatemalan and Puerto Rican. I chose the Colombian and enjoyed a strong shot of coffee which gave me an early morning caffeine boost!

    There were various other coffees on offer (cappuccino, latte, Americano) and a good selection of teas (Earl Grey, English Breakfast, Ceylon, green tea, jasmine tea and an extensive selection of fruit teas), as well as tea mixed with wine and coffees and teas mixed with spirits.

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