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21 Epic Valencia Tapas Bars

21 Epic Valencia Tapas Bars

If you’re on the hunt for the best Valencia tapas bars, this article will break down exactly where to indulge in great eats in Spain’s third city.

After spending the summer living in Valencia, I’ve spent plenty of time checking out all of the best things to do in Valencia, exploring the top Valencia day trips, and, of course, eating my way around this seaside city.

Most of these Valencia tapas bars are in the central Valencia neighborhoods including the old town, del Carmen, and near the train stations in Valencia. However, there are also some great spots close to the beach in the El Cabanyal neighborhood.

What to Know about Tapas in Valencia

Like most of Spain, dinner starts late (compared to the US or northern Europe).

If you want to have tapas before 7pm, you’ll find yourself at restaurants and bars that cater mostly to tourists. This means that the food is likely overpriced and of a lower quality.

Most tapas bars in Valencia don’t reopen until at least 7pm, many not until 8pm. They will serve food until 10:30 or 11pm, some even until midnight depending on what type of tapas they make.

Tapas are small plates that you can share amongst your group at the table. If you want larger plates, these are usually called raciones. There is also usually an option to have a media racion, or half ration. This is larger than a tapa-sized plate, but not quite as large as a racion.

Take a Tapas Tour in Valencia

If you want to enjoy a lot of different tapas in Valencia, but you’re short on time. Or perhaps you want to visit the traditional tapas bars in Valencia, but you don’t speak any Spanish. 

Maybe you want to explore with a knowledgeable guide who can make sure you sample all of the best local tapas dishes in Valencia. Or perhaps you’re traveling solo and you want to sample lots of food without spending a fortune or ordering more than you can eat.

The best way to ensure these things is to take a top-rated tapas tour in Valencia. These are my top picks when you visit the city.

  • Old Town tour with wine and tapas: This tour is a combination historical tour with food and wine to finish. If you want to combine both learning about the history of Valencia with enjoying a few local tapas and sampling regional wine from the Valencia Community, this is the tour to take. Book yourself onto that tour here.
  • Evening tapas tour: This tour stops at four different bars where you will sample 10-12 different dishes along with drink pairings to go with it. You’ll learn about some of the best tapas bars in Valencia as well as the different foods that Valencians love most. Book that tour here.
  • Morning tour with market visit: Explore the wonderful Valencia central market before exploring some of the best tapas spots for breakfast bites. If you want to enjoy Spanish tapas, but don’t want to pair them with alcohol, this is the perfect option for you. Book a morning tour here.
  • Traditional Valencia Food Tour: Learn about Valencian food history in this fantastic food tour that will take you out to enjoy not only tapas, but essentially Valencian foods like paella and orchata. Book that food tour here.

Best Tapas Bars in Valencia

These different spots for great tapas in Valencia vary greatly. Whether you want to dine with the locals, watch the Valencia game while you drink, head somewhere upmarket, or stick to the well-touristed spots where there’s always an English menu, I’ve covered them all in this guide.

What you can be certain is that these Valencia tapas bars all have some great food, good drinks at a reasonable price, and great vibes well into the night.

1. El Molinón

El Molinón is one of the best tapas bars in Valencia with an extensive menu of tapas to choose from.

It is an Asturian bar with cider from the region and something that I haven’t seen elsewhere before, vermút made with cider rather than wine. It was a delicious tipple to have with the different meats and cheeses on the menu at El Molinón. 

The bar can get very busy on the weekends, so you may have to wait for a table. If you are set on eating here on a Friday or Saturday night, then consider booking a table ahead of time by calling them. They have staff who speak English. You can call them at +34 963 911 538.

A few dishes to try on the menu are the cider chorizo which is set alight at the table for a little bit of extra flair. If you like blue cheese, the queso Gamoneu is fantastic. The croquetas are rich and creamy and salty, especially the ones made with mushrooms or goat meat.

2. Tasca el Botijo

Come here for the street vibes and stay for the huge tapas list. It is so hard to get a table here during the busy summer months, so if you are here in August, be sure to book a table in advance.

There are a few tapas bars in a row along this street, but don’t be fooled by all of the tables that make it look like one big bar. The best tapas along this strip is definitely form Tasca el Botijo.

They have classic tapas like anchovies, goat cheese with tomato jam, sausages cooked in cier, and patatas bravas. But they also have delicious little tostas, or sliced of bread topped with all manner of goodies. 

A few tostas that you might want to try include the sobrasada, the smoked cod fish, and the morcilla or black pudding style sausage.

plate of cured meat topped with almonds on a black slate plate.

There are so many amazing tapas bars in Valencia to try and so many delicious dishes to enjoy.

3. Bodega La Rentaora

If there is only one tapas bar in Valencia that you visit during your trip, it should be this.

If you’re visiting during the summer or other busy travel times, you will absolutely need to book a table at least a day or two in advance. When the bar is really busy, they simply stop accepting walk-ins, so you can only get a table if you’ve made a reservation. Call ahead +34 670 396 302. The waiters speak Spanish, English, Italian, and French.

The wine list here is one of the best reasons to come, but they also have a list of local vermouth, beers on draft, and some of the best tapas in Valencia.

A few dishes not to miss include Lacón caliente, the hot sliced ham, manchego with rosemary, and the pork loin with orzo. The tostas are also great quality here with the duck foie being a highlight.

4. La Lateria del Carmen

If you want to visit two great tapas bars in Valencia without walking all over town, right next door to La Rentaora is another fantastic tapas spot, La Lateria del Carmen.

This whole area comes alive at night with a small tapas market across the street. However, these two spots are the ones that the locals frequent and the only two that remain open through August.

A Lateria is a place that has mostly canned goods, which are a popular way to enjoy and preserve seafood in the Iberian Peninsula. But it’s not all about canned fish here.

One of the best dishes on the menu is the very fresh cockle ceviche. They also serve some of the best cecine, or cured beef, in a bar setting in Valencia. Most of the meat is served with a generous topping of olive oil and plenty of crusty bread to pair it with.

plate of ceviche with avocado in a white plate.

The cockle ceviche at La Lateria is one of the best dishes that I ate during my whole summer in Valencia.

5. Bar Ripalda “Boludo” 

If you are looking for the best local spot for tapas in Valencia, Bar Ripalda is the place to go. It’s cheap and cheerful with chairs outside to relax in the warm summer nights.

This became something of my “regular” while I was living in Valencia. They show all of the Valencia CF futbol games on several TVs. When the games are on, the bar is packed out onto the street with fans yelling at the TV.

The food is classic bar food with snacks like tasty olives, plates of cooked vegetables like mushrooms and fava beans served with fresh crusty bread. There are cheese plates as well as fantastic tortilla Española.

The bar is run by a man from Argentina, so they also have some pretty fantastic empanadas. Although not traditionally Spanish, they are a great snack to have with a few beers while you watch the game.

6. BoBoBar

If you want a tapas bar that is a little bit more upscale, serving dishes like snails, local artisan cheese, perfectly cooked artichokes (when they’re in season), and raw oysters, then this is the tapas bar in Valencia for you.

You can easily spend the whole night eating plate after plate from the menu at BoBoBar. It feels like you get to sample every dish at a fancy restaurant, but without having to have huge portions of anything.

They also have one of the best wine menus of any of the tapas bars in Valencia on this list. Sample some Valencia Cava or a local rose. The lighter wines go perfectly with the seafood and cheese-heavy tapas options.

table full of Valencia tapas dishes including cheese, meat, bread, and ham.

The different tapas available at La Rentaora are all delicious.

7. Cafe Negrito

This is one of the best areas to be in central Valencia for a night out. Head here on a Friday or Saturday night when the plaza is packed with tables from all of the different bars that surround it.

In the early evening, you can have drinks and a few cold tapas here. If you want to try the famed Agua de Valencia, this is a good place to have it. They also make a tasty tinto de verano (similar to a sangria).

After about 10pm, the entire inside of the bar becomes a dance floor with a DJ and some great music for dancing with your friends. It is a huge mix of ages in here, so even if you feel like you are “too old” for clubs, you certainly won’t be the oldest people in the crowd.

8. Escalons de la Llotja

Escalons de la Llotja is one of the best places to come for traditional Spanish tapas in Valencia. This is where to come for patatas bravas, croquettes, anchovies, and padron peppers. 

One of the main reasons to choose Escalons de la Llotja over other tapas bars in the area is because of the delicious seafood options. They have fried squid, tuna tartar, grilled cuttlefish, and incredible Octopus in the Galicia style.

The plates are definitely tapas sized here, so it’s a good place to come for some snacks, but you likely won’t be very full if you are sharing amongst several people at the table.

terracotta plate of sliced sausages.

The chistorra with cider is a popular tapas dish around Valencia, but I enjoyed it most at El Molinón.

9. Tapas Boatella

Thanks to its location right around the corner from the Central Market and other tourist spots, this is a very popular spot throughout the day.

There are several tables outside in the sunshine as well as more inside if you would prefer to be away from the traffic of the road.

Wherever you choose to sit, you’ll be treated to delicious options like steamed mussels, fried shrimp, clams, croquettes, and plenty of meat options as well if you’re not interested in seafood.

This spot is best to visit for lunchtime tapas. That’s when the streets here are at their liveliest and when the seafood is freshest. 

10. El Leon Bar & Bistro

Located in the beautiful Plaza Redondo, El Leon is definitely the best tapas bar in this area. If you can grab a table outside, it’s such a fun place to be at night when all of the restaurants and bars in the plaza come to life. 

The grilled shrimp here is exceptional and all shrimp lovers should order it here. They have perfectly grilled calamari and nice plates of cured meat and cheese. 

If you are looking for a tapas bar that also does larger plates, you can also find a full menu here. They have paella and fideua, which is similar to paella except it’s made with noodles.

If you are traveling to Spain in August, be sure to book a table in advance here. It is one of the busiest places in the city for evening tapas.

blue cheese sliced up on a black slate at a Valencia tapas bar.

There are so many different types of local cheese to sample at tapas bars in Valencia!

11. Central Bar by Ricard Camarena

The only Valencia tapas bar inside the Central Market, Central Bar is a great place to sample high quality food at a reasonable price.

Ricard Camarena is a 2-Michelin star chef in Valencia and reservations at his restaurant are hard to come by without planning at least a month in advance.

If you want to sample some of Camarena’s menu in a more casual setting, get in line at the Central Bar. This is a tapas bar right in the middle of the central market where you can have a few drinks and taste tapas of exceptional quality.

The menu changes almost daily depending on what seasonal ingredients are available. You can expect things like artichokes, salted cod, Spanish-style meatballs, anchovies, and plenty of other essential tapas ingredients.

12. Bodega Valero

A local institution, Bodega Valero is full of locals every night of the week. Except in August when the restaurant is closed for nearly the entire month.

The tapas at Bodega Valero are piled high along the bar are a very meat heavy. You can expect to find fish dishes, meatballs, slow-cooked pork, tortillas, and sausages. 

They also make small but mighty sandwiches that they call bocatas. The embutido is one not to miss if you enjoy different types of sausage. It’s filled with chorizo, longaniza, and morcilla.

The prices here are incredible reasonable with almost nothing on the menu over €10. They have a small wine list and serve most in a carafe at a very reasonable price.

bowl of stew with a glass of beer in the background.

One of the best things about tapas in Valencia is that you can taste a lot of different dishes at once.

13. Cerveceria Alhambra

When researching the best tapas bars in Valencia for my own travels, Cerveceria Alhambra kept coming up on local websites as one of the best places in Valencia for tortilla Española.

If you aren’t familiar with this popular Spanish dish, it’s somewhere between a quiche and an omelette. In some places outside of Spain, you may even hear it referred to as a Spanish omelette.

It is an egg and potato dish. There are sometimes onions, but it’s hotly debated across the country as to whether tortillas should have onions or not. The tortilla is cooked in a deep pan and when you order a tortilla, you usually get a slice of it from the main dish.

The tortilla at Alhambra can be simply with potatoes and egg or you can also have it with chorizo, onion, spinach, or other fillings that they have used that day. 

Wash it down with a caña of beer which costs under €1. 

14. La Bodegueta de Joan Llorenç

I stumbled upon this local tapas bar when I discovered that the delicious Bodega Valero was closed for the rest of the month. It’s just around the corner from Valero and is well worth visiting for a few tapas or after a slice of tortilla from Alhambra.

La Bodegueta feels like a true neighborhood spot with a few tables outside and a fantastic menu of traditional Spanish dishes like Cocido Madrileño, rice with squid and local sausage, or stewed beans with chorizo.

In addition to a normal menu for lunch and dinner, they have a pretty extensive tapas menu. The deer carpacio is a unique option. They also have octopus cooked in different ways and artichokes topped with thinly sliced Iberico ham.

thick slice of tortilla espanola with a slice of toast on the side and a fork sticking up out of the tortilla.

I sampled tortilla all over Valencia and the one at Alhambra was definitely one of the best.

15. Bar Royal

Bar Royal is a short walk from the Valencia Nord train station. If you are waiting for a train or you arrived too early to check into your hotel, this is a great place to come for a drink and a few snacks.

They have montaditos which are small sandwhiches, usually open-faced, topped with different meats, cheeses, or anchovies. If you haven’t tried ensaladilla Rusa, or the Russian salad, then this is a good place to try it.

Russian salad is a popular dish all over Mexico and is essentially a potato salad but there is usually canned tuna in it as well as something pickled like cucumbers or carrots. I’ve also seen it with peas. The one at Bar Royal is a delicious version of this very Spanish salad.

16. Bar Vermudez

If you like Spanish vermouth, then you don’t want to miss visiting this Valencia tapas spot. The tapas menu is extensive with all of the classics as well as some more unique options.

The meatballs cooked in vermouth are a great option that you won’t find elsewhere. They have huevos rotos, which means broken eggs. Huevos rotos is a simple dish of fried potato topped with runny fried eggs and usually some meat. At Vermudez they make it with sobresada, a soft and spicy pork sausage meat.

The cheese platter, mixed with local cheese chosen by the chef, is another option that will not dissapoint.

thick pieces of anchovies in oil on a plate with a set of tongs at the back of the plate.

Anchovies and sardines are a popular tapas dish to have in Spain.

17. Bar Richard

Get yourself to Bar Richard for the seafood tapas. You’ll find razor clams, mussels, shrimp, octopus, fish, and squid all on the menu and cooked in different ways.

The menu depends entirely on what seafood is available that day, so come early. They are only open from 12:30-6pm, so it is definitely a lunch spot. They are also not open on the weekends and don’t accept reservations.

They have fresh salads to go along with your seafood and a few meat options if someone in the group doesn’t want seafood. They also have a few mushroom and potato-centric dishes if there is a vegetarian or vegan in the group.

18. Casa Montaña

Head out to the beach and after a sunning yourself all day, stop into Casa Montaña in the El Cabanyal neighborhood.

If there’s only one place you go to in El Cabanyal, this should be it. This is a Valencia tapas institution. They have been serving up food and drink in this very tavern since 1836. 

This is the place to come for a fantastic wine selection. They make their own wines which are available. They also have other regional wines to sample as well as wine from other parts of Spain. 

The tapas menu is seemingly endless and mostly in Spanish, so be sure to download the Spanish dictionary in Google Translate so you know exactly what you’re ordering.

The items that are always on the menu that are fantastic are the razor clams, grilled sardines, salted cod croquettes, patatas bravas, and fried anchovies.

plaza redondo with a fountain in the middle.

Explore Plaza Redondo and some of the great nearby tapas bars.

19. Bar Lapaca

Another great tapas bar in the El Cabanyal neighborhood of Valencia is Bar Lapaca.

This is much more casual than Casa Montaña and usually far less busy. 

It has a retro almost diner-like feel to the interior with checkered floors and funky art on the walls.

But it is cooked up a huge selection of delicious and unique tortillas. They have tortillas with salted cod, chorizo, mushroom, goat’s cheese, or just with potato. They even have a vegan tortilla available with an egg alternative.

They also serve up ice cold beer on draft, local vermouth, and have a few wines available, too. 

20. Casa Guillermo

Casa Guillermo is a great lunchtime tapas bar in the El Cabanyal neighborhood of Valencia.

Although they are open at night, the best food and the best vibes can be found closer to Spanish lunchtime from around 1:30 until they close for siesta at 4pm. This is especially true during the summer months when the nearby beach and boardwalk are packed with tourists.

There are tapas of all kinds at Casa Guillermo. Try the Galician-style octopus, the oxtail croquettes, the stuffed peppers, or the Iberico sobrasada sandwich.

21. Ca la Mar

The opening hours of this local Valencia tapas bar are ideal for tourists and it’s one of the few places that you don’t have to sacrifice quality simply to eat early.

They are open non-stop from 9:30 am until 1 am. Come here for brunch, lunch, mid afternoon snacks, early dinner, dinner, or post-drink snacks.

Ca la Mar is a clever name because in Valencian it means like the sea, but it can also be read as calamar which is Spanish for squid. You’ll find both calamar and plenty of other dishes from the sea on this menu.

The items on this menu are light but delicious including shrimp, barbecued squid, steamed mussels, and anchovies in vinegar. They also have some vegetarian dishes and plenty of meat dishes like the mouthwateringly good Secreto Iberico.