The best dishes in Spain, and where to try them


Bountiful seafood and rich produce from the interior of Spain combine to create one of the world’s great cuisines. Inventive chefs and a wealth of regional variety add to the allure, all of which make eating here a memorable part of the Spanish travel experience.

Meals come in many varieties, from bite-sized morsels of perfection at a tapas or pintxos bar to multi-course feasts overlooking the seaside. You’ll also find great wines, sprawling food markets and plenty of unique snacks to tide you over between the big meals. The convivial atmosphere also plays a role: Spaniards love to dine out, and it’s impossible not to feel the buzz when delving into the country’s gloriously diverse dining scene. 

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Go on a tapas (or pintxos) tasting

One of the world’s most enjoyable dining experiences, eating tapas – small snack plates – is a way of life in Spain. For the uninitiated, these bite-sized snacks are typically delivered in waves, often in noisy bars, where they are washed down with glasses of local vino in marathon sessions that can last for hours.

The dishes served as tapas vary widely depending on where you are in the country. In the white villages and historic towns of Andalucía, expect the best jamón (ham) and fine Spanish olives – Moorish-influenced Granada is famed for its pinchos morunos (spiced pork skewers) and montaditos (stacked open sandwiches secured with a toothpick).

In San Sebastián and elsewhere in the Basque Country, the most popular small bites are pintxos, named for the “spike” that often holds them together. Here, the snack is…

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