A Friendly Guide to Restaurants in Malta
This beautiful Mediterranean island nation is known for its rich history, stunning landscapes, and of course, its delicious cuisine. In this guide, we’ll introduce you to some of our favorite eateries, covering everything from traditional Maltese dishes to international favorites. Let’s get started on this gastronomic adventure!
A Brief Introduction to Maltese Cuisine
Before we dive into the restaurant recommendations, it’s essential to understand a bit about Maltese cuisine. Influenced by various Mediterranean cultures, Maltese food is a blend of Italian, North African, and British flavors. Expect to find fresh seafood, hearty stews, delicious bread, and unique pastries on your culinary journey. Now, let’s explore some of the best places to eat on this amazing island!
1. Ta’ Kris Restaurant, Sliema
Located in the bustling town of Sliema, Ta’ Kris Restaurant is a cozy, family-run eatery that specializes in authentic Maltese dishes. It’s the perfect place to try traditional food like rabbit stew, bragioli (beef olives), and the famous Maltese bread ftira. The warm atmosphere and friendly service make it a must-visit for anyone looking for a taste of local culture.
2. Gululu, St. Julian’s
Located in the heart of St. Julian’s, Gululu is a vibrant, modern restaurant that serves delicious Maltese and Mediterranean cuisine. With its prime location by the sea, it’s the perfect spot for enjoying fresh seafood dishes like Lampuki pie, octopus stew, and a variety of pasta dishes featuring local ingredients. Don’t miss their mouthwatering desserts, like the traditional kannoli or the indulgent chocolate fondant.
3. Legligin, Valletta
Nestled in the historic city of Valletta, Legligin is a charming wine bar and bistro that offers a unique Maltese dining experience. The menu is designed for sharing, allowing you to sample a variety of local dishes, from savory pastizzi to the flavorful Maltese sausage. Pair your meal with a carefully curated selection of local and international wines, and you’ll be in for a memorable evening.
4. Margo’s, Valletta
For a taste of something different, head over to Margo’s, a trendy pizzeria that offers a unique fusion of Maltese and Italian flavors. Their creative pizzas, topped with local ingredients like gbejniet (sheep’s cheese) and Maltese sausage, are cooked in a traditional wood-fired oven. The cozy atmosphere and friendly staff make it a popular choice for a relaxed dinner with friends or family.
5. Noni, Valletta
Noni is a fine dining restaurant located in a beautifully restored 16th-century building in Valletta. The menu showcases the best of Maltese and Mediterranean cuisine, with a focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients. The elegant setting and impeccable service make it the perfect place for a special occasion or romantic dinner.
6. The Harbour Club, Valletta
Offering stunning views of the Grand Harbour, The Harbour Club is a stylish restaurant that serves a mix of Maltese and international dishes. Enjoy your meal on the terrace while watching the sunset, or dine indoors in the chic, contemporary dining room. The Harbour Club is known for its delicious seafood dishes, as well as its impressive wine list and signature cocktails. Be sure to try their grilled octopus or the flavorful Maltese-style fish soup.
7. Il-Merill, Sliema
Il-Merill is a delightful family-run restaurant located in Sliema, offering a friendly, welcoming atmosphere and a menu filled with traditional Maltese dishes. From hearty stews to delicious pastas, the food is lovingly prepared using locally sourced ingredients. Be sure to leave room for dessert, as their homemade imqaret (date pastries) and helwa tat-tork (Turkish delight) are not to be missed.
8. Ta’ Marija, Mosta
For a truly immersive Maltese dining experience, look no further than Ta’ Marija in Mosta. This award-winning restaurant is known for its lively folklore nights, featuring traditional Maltese music and dance performances. The menu boasts a wide range of local dishes, from scrumptious appetizers like pastizzi and gbejniet, to main courses like rabbit stew and timpana (baked pasta). Round off your meal with a glass of Maltese liqueur or a tasty dessert, such as the classic kannoli.
9. Rubino, Valletta
Established in 1906, Rubino is a historic restaurant in Valletta that offers a taste of old-world charm. With its warm ambiance and classic decor, it’s the ideal setting for a leisurely meal. The menu features a mix of traditional Maltese and Italian dishes, including fresh pasta, seafood, and meat dishes. Don’t forget to sample their extensive dessert selection, which includes classics like tiramisu and panna cotta.
10. Tal-Petut, Birgu
Located in the picturesque city of Birgu, Tal-Petut is a charming boutique restaurant housed in a 400-year-old building. The intimate dining rooms, each uniquely decorated, create a cozy and romantic atmosphere. Tal-Petut’s menu changes regularly based on seasonal ingredients, but you can expect to find a variety of Maltese and Mediterranean dishes. The restaurant also offers a selection of vegetarian and vegan options, making it a great choice for diners with dietary restrictions.
From traditional Maltese eateries to modern, fusion restaurants, Malta offers a diverse and mouthwatering dining scene. We hope this guide helps you discover some of the best restaurants on the island, and that you enjoy your culinary journey through Malta’s rich and varied cuisine. Don’t forget to try some of the local wines and liqueurs as well, as they make the perfect accompaniment to a delicious meal.