The city of Valencia on Spain’s southeastern coast is has seen much development in its gastro scene. Several new restaurants, eateries and innovative culinary projects are popping up around the city, and it’s no surprise that it’s becoming the top destination for a foodie holiday in 2021.
1. It’s in the history
Valencia is a city with an already stable foundation in the culinary world. Home of the most famous of Spanish dishes, paella, it has long been a popular foodie location thanks to its the deep rooted traditions in the culinary world. However, now a number of innovative projects from renowned chefs and aspiring gastronomic entrepreneurs are building on the city’s gastrotourism offering, leading the way for it to become the top foodie destination for 2021.
2. Exciting projects – Restaurante Vertical
For an idea of what culinary delights you can expect to find in Valencia, take a look at the ingenious project, ‘Sorolla. Visión y Sabores de España‘. Sorolla. Vision and Flavours of Spain, is a gastronomic project by Jorge De Andrés, founder of Restaurante Vertical, which pays gastronomic homage to the world-renowned Valencian artist, Joaquín Sorolla. The project has seen the establishment’s design transformed and a new menu, inspired by artistic series, ‘Visión de España’, in which Sorolla painted 14 murals of different Spanish regions for the Hispanic Society of America in 1919. De Andrés’ menu pays homage to each of the 14 works by incorporating the best produce from each of the Spanish regions into the menu but with a contemporary twist. The restaurant interior and dinnerware has been created together with artist and designer, Laura Maldonado, to capture the essence of Sorolla’s masterpieces. The dining experience will be in place at Restaurante Vertical throughout 2021.
3. Exciting projects – La Sastrería
Another exciting new addition to Valencia’s gastro scene is La Sastrería in the Canyamelar-Cabanyal neighbourhood. With its striking interior design, ceramic tiles cover almost every surface of the restaurant in fun checkerboard patterns. Located in an old tailor shop, La Sastrería has three sections with each one making special references to the local neighbourhood. One example is the dining room, decked out in glossy dark blue tiles and featuring a hanging ceiling installation designed to make the diner feel like they are submerged in an ocean setting, is a nod to the neighbourhood’s maritime location. The menu features highlights such as the marine salad with torreznos and artisan pickles and the tasty Wagyu meatball on roasted potato with Pedro Ximénez sauce. The restaurant seeks to pay tribute to the character of the area, generating a new culinary and sensorial experience for diners.
4. Exciting projects – La Salita
Additionally, the one Michelin-starred La Salita from renowned Valencian chef, Begoña Rodrigo, has reopened in an old 18th century palace in the Ruzafa area having previously been established in L’Amistat. The new dining experience is characterised by its setting in an open-air palace garden with traditional whitewash and wooden Valencian architecture. The transformation of La Salita is not only reflected in the new space, but also in its gastronomic offerings. Begoña is committed to delving into Valencian produce and putting ingredients that, in some cases, are under appreciated on the pedestal. For example, the bachoqueta, a traditional green bean that is added to paella, is highlighted in a dish of vegetable noodles with courgette, mushroom slices and summer truffles, accompanied by kimchi sauce and raw sheep’s milk cheese.
5. Something for everyone
The gastro scene in Valencia has something for everyone, whether its a delicious takeaway, exquisite fine dining, or quality street food. For the latter, El Garaje, an old 1960’s truck workshop transformed into a gastronomic space certainly hits the spot. The space brings together a collection of trucks serving street food from different eras including the 50s, 60s and 70s. The new culinary experience also stays true to its roots as a truck repair shop by serving food from food trucks which are in themselves an exhibition. El Garaje features seven historic vehicles including three classic Citroën HY, a Saba, two Avia and a Vespacar. The décor also includes old motorcycles, vintage furniture and uniformed waiters dressed as mechanics. The Galician blonde beef burgers come highly recommended as do the artisan pizzas, Valencian tapas dishes and sweet treats called ‘cremaets’, traditionally from the province of Castellón. Valenia has everything you need for a foodie holiday, and with so many culinary delights all around the city, it is sure not to disappoint!