International cuisine: tour the world without leaving Valencia
If there is one place you can eat well, it is Valencia. The cosmopolitan city is open to current culinary trends, while remaining devoted to the classic hallmarks of its identity: the Mediterranean diet made with local seasonal ingredients. This has also inspired the many restaurants in the city featuring cuisine from different corners of the globe. Their recipes come from around the world, but with a touch that is all our own. Let's discover some of them.
Ma Khin Cafe
Steve Anderson, Anglo-Burmese physicist by training and chef by passion, has been developing his brilliant contribution to fusion cuisine in Valencia for three decades now. Today, he has two locations where he continues to surprise guests. The first, Ma Khin Cafe, is named for his great-grandmother, born in Moulmein (now Mawlamyine), Myanmar. In his kitchen on the lower level of the Colón Market, he practises what he terms ‘decolonial Asian food’, which translates into such delicious dishes as a steaming pot of mohinga or a simple, comforting bowl of dahl.
From Canalla Bistro, Ricard Camarena – a huge name on the city's culinary scene – will take you around the world without ever leaving the Russafa neighbourhood, offering such authentic dishes as Japanese okonomiyaki, a New York-style pastrami sandwich, or Mexican cochinita pibil, all of which made a big impression on Camarena in his travels.
Also in Russafa, the culinary duo made up of Germán Carrizo and Carito Lourenço quench a longing for their homeland of Argentina at Doña Petrona, with the dishes that featured heavily in their childhoods, all with a Valencian touch. Roasted octopus, berenjena a llama and hummus, and roast Galician beef all have promise.
Gastronomic proposal that blends Mexican and Mediterranean cuisine together with great care: apapachar means to caress with the soul in an indigenous Mexican language, so imagine the TLC they put into it. In Apapacho, they cook with seasonal ingredients and their secret weapon is the grill. Recommendations? Hake taco in tempura, chipotle mayonnaise and red cabbage, grilled cod, candied peppers or beef sirloin, light cream of garlic and potato with cottage cheese are some of its must-tries.
Right next to the Valencia CF Stadium, Mestalla, is Living Bakkali, a restaurant that is all sophistication: the décor, the ambiance and, of course, the menu, are carefully crafted. You could say it's a tribute to the Orient with its adobe architecture and dishes that fuse Eastern and Western food such as the flamed aubergine salad, sobrasada, honey cheese, sunflower seeds and arugula, or a crunchy cone of Iberian pork fillet with Peking sauce. Oh! And it offers a private dining room.
CUISINES OF THE WORLD
Italy is another powerful presence in local restaurants. San Tommaso feeds those drawn in by its transalpine delights, reminiscent of those prepared by the best mamma in the world. It is a ‘piccola Italia in centro città’: antipasti, foccacie, rissoti, pizze, pasta dishes and delicious desserts. Buon appetito!
Asador El Porteño
If you consider yourself a fan of the finest meats, you absolutely must try Asador El Porteño, featuring the best cuts and aromas of the Pampas. Their chorizo criollo with chimichurri sauce, bife and tira de asado share space with Argentinean pasties. What a feast.
Hard Rock Café
Hard Rock Café is a slice of the American way of life and musical heritage right on Ayuntamiento Square. The menu offers the best of American cuisine, with a variety of hamburgers, sandwiches, meats, fish and pasta.
Located in Barrio del Carmen, Kuzina is Greek cuisine prepared by Alkis and Lydia, two Greeks who strive to keep the flavor as close to the original as possible in all of their dishes. They make traditional Greek recipes, but with their own touch. You have to try the grilled octopus or the "melitzanosalata", which is an eggplant salad or the "lemonatto" lamb. They also offer many vegetarian dishes.
Asador San Telmo
In the Ruzafa neighborhood, it honors the renowned Argentine meats with a menu that includes the best cuts and other specialties. You have to try the Bife, Vacío, Tira de Ternera, Matambre or the chorizos creole. In short, if you like meat, this is the restaurant for you.
True Indian cuisine in the Abastos area, in an establishment with very meticulous decoration. Its dishes, with the aromas and flavors so typical of this cuisine, are always made with spices brought from India and local products. You will find typical Indian recipes and some specials from the chef who, like the entire team, is Indian. They also have various vegetarian and vegan options.
Momiji Atelier is not just any Japanese restaurant; it's a Japanese restaurant with the best seafood prepared on the spot. It's in the lower part of the Mercado de Colón, where they have tables and a bar in which to have lunch or dinner and from which you can watch as the team moves with choreographed precision. The hard thing will be choosing from the extensive menu, with nigiris, tatakis, temakis, urakamis... quite the dilemma.
Quina is a trip to Peru. The menu is a faithful reflection of the variety of Peruvian cuisine with a dose of the creativity of its chefs. The emblematic ceviches are spot on, and so are dishes such as the farmer's chicken served with yellow potato, citrus mayonnaise, avocado and pickled celery, or anglerfish cooked in a base of coriander and Peruvian beer, and Peruvian quinoa with huancaina sauce. And their desserts are incredibly original.
Come out and treat yourself to half the world without ever leaving Valencia.