Thursday, August 11, 2022

New Culinary Trends in the Basque Country, Spain

Alta Cocina Vasca

Grande Cuisine is a fairly new culinary trend that has been escalating within the years. This is the type of cuisine practiced in high end hotels and most Michelin star restaurants. It is most common  because of the use of products with extreme good quality; detailed,  artistic presentations; and the most complex and refined recipes. Within the last 50 years the well known Basque Chefs have been working towards this type of cuisine, making the Basque Country (specially San Sebastián), a well known tourist destination for those who like indulging on fine dining. The Basque Country is home to over 40 restaurants with Michelin stars.

Aperitivo de Txangurro

Aperitivo de Txangurro (King Crab)
Source: Desirée Piña

Here is a list of the most common Restaurants with Michelin Stars in the Basque Country:

Akelarre (3)

Arzak (3)

Martín Berasategui (3)

Azurmendi (3)

Mugaritz (2)

Nerua (1)

Kokotxas (1)

Alameda (1)

Zuberoa (1)

Kokotxas de Merluza, lámina de papada Ibérica, Restaurante Aizian, Bilbao
Hake Kokotxas, Iberian pig bacon
Source: Desirée Piña

Healthy Eating and Superfoods

Healthy eating and the use of superfoods is a culinary trend worldwide. I have been living in Spain for 10 years now and it has always been hard to find a place to just eat a clean healthy meal, low in calories and stuffed with super foods. Within the years I have seen more bars and cafés implementing smoothies, juices, lean sandwiches and healthier delicacies in their menu.


In the culinary world we have seen loads of different gastronomy merging and creating a fusion between one or more cuisines. Not a very common thing in the Basque Country but within the years you can  definitely see the globalisation of gastronomy in Basque dishes.

You can find pintxos with Bao bread filled with duck or head to a fusion restaurant like Topa Sukalderia in San Sebastián, which merges Mexican and traditional Basque cuisines;  Restaurante Elosta which merges Japanese and Basque cuisines; and Bar Nikkei which is a fusion between Japanese and Peruvian cuisine.

Vegetarian and Vegan Cuisines

Pimientos rellenos de  Brandada

Pimientos rellenos de  Brandada ´Bakalao´ Tofu, Black Salad, Vitoria, Basque Country
Red Peppers stuffed with Tofu ‘Cod’
Source: Desirée Piña

If you are vegetarian or vegan and you have travelled to Spain before you would know how hard it is to enjoy a lovely meal in a restaurant. The number of vegetarian and vegan restaurants in this region of Spain is not high but it is becoming more and more popular within the years.

Here is a list of really good vegetarian or vegan restaurants in the Basque Country: 

Black Salad, Vitoria (Vegan Restaurant)

Km O, San Sebastián (Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurant)

Maiatza, San Sebastián (Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurant)

El Pastor de Gorbea, Berriz (Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurant)

Mapa Verde, Donostia (Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurant)

El Curry Verde, Hondarribi (Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurant)

Mexican Bean

Mexican Bean Salad , Black Salad, Vitoria, Basque Country
Source: Desirée Piña

Sirimiri, San Sebastián (Vegetarian and Vegan Options)

Rekalde, San Sebastián  (Vegetarian and Vegan Options)

Donostidog, San Sebastián  (Vegetarian and Vegan Options)

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Desirée Piña
Dominican - Italian living in Spain Foodie 27 years old • Born and raised in the Dominican Republic of Dominican father and Italian mother. • Have been living in Spain for 10 years • Culinary School student in Escuela de Cocina Luis Irizar, San Sebastián, Spain • Chef in Training • Digital nomad and vivid traveller • Freelancer • Last name is Piña, which means Pineapple in Spanish.


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