Discover Michelin Starred Restaurants in Spain: Part 1 (Andalucia & Valencia)

Discover Michelin starred restaurants in Spain

Discover Michelin Starred Restaurants in Spain: Part 1 (Andalucia & Valencia)

A Guide to some of the best Michelin starred restaurants in Spain by Just Explore…

BATHED by the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, the Spanish diet is rich in seafood and renowned for its flavours, colours, and vibrant mixtures; in part thanks to Spain’s geographical location but also greatly influenced by a variety of cultures that have passed through or settled in Spain over the centuries.

Elements from different cultures, including Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, and Arabs, together with regional ingredients have shaped the Iberian diet as we know it; a rich culinary scene duly recognised with 249 Michelin-star restaurants throughout the country which can boast to having an acclaimed fine-dining scene.

Food on the Iberian Peninsula is a way of life and a true art-form; deeply ingrained in the Spanish culture, with daily life often revolving around meals…and the planning of the next ones!

Haute cuisine in a Michelin-Starred Restaurant in Spain. Credit: Pixabay.
Haute cuisine in a Michelin Starred Restaurant in Spain. Credit: Pixabay.

From the flavorful spices of the south to the hearty stews of the north, chefs in Spain get to work with high-quality produce allowing them to highlight their region’s specialties, and, with the influence of great chefs like the Catalan Ferran Adria, or Madrid-born David Muñoz Rosillo, Spain is home to some of the most incredibly talented culinary minds in the world.

While travelling with Just Explore, you’ll have exclusive access to our city guides which, amongst other things, feature our own recommendation on where to eat and drink in every city or town you visit. 

Travelling abroad is a great time to try new experiences, including culinary experiences and our goal is to make sure that, whether you opt for a small family run restaurant, a swanky new eatery or a street food stand, you will alway eat well and—thanks to the outstanding service you’re sure to experience in any of the establishments we have personally selected—you’ll most definitely be in for a treat! 

That said, if you want to absolutely guarantee a truly unforgettable haute cuisine experience, heading to a Michelin-starred restaurant is always a sure bet.

The 2023 Michelin Guide showcases 1,401 restaurants throughout Spain, Portugal and the Principality of Andorra.

The last publication of the Michelin guide for Spain and Portugal 2023, showcases 1,401 restaurants throughout Spain, Portugal and the Principality of Andorra. Among these, 13 have three Michelin Stars, 41 have two Michelin Stars and 233 were awarded one Michelin Star.

The sheer number of restaurants may make picking one seem like a daunting task. To help you a little, we’ve put together this handy guide, divided into three parts, of some of our favourites.

In this first selection of Michelin starred restaurants in Spain we will focus on those restaurants found in the regions of Andalucia and Valencia.

In Part II we will delve into the outstanding cuisine found in Michelin-starred restaurants in the Basque country, Cataluña and Spain’s capital Madrid.

The final instalment will take us to Portugal, where the highly-regarded French gastronomic bible has awarded a total of 44 stars to 37 restaurants across the country.

So sit back, relax and get ready to feel hungry!

Michelin Starred Restaurants in Andalucia: Southern Spain boasts 23 restaurants with the highly-coveted recognition from the gastronomy rating guide.

Noor** – Cordoba

This unique fine dining restaurant goes above and beyond, providing a truly immersive experience. True to its name which means “light” in Arabic, Noor’s meticulous and passionate team highlight the essence and history of the city of Córdoba. 

Chef Paco Morales breathes new life into traditional Andalucian cuisine using modern ideas and techniques. Every season, the restaurant explores a different historical period.

Bardal** – Ronda

There are times on an extended vacation when you may feel the need to take a moment out and immerse yourself in peace, tranquillity and inspiration, and what better place to to reconnect with oneself by slowing down and exploring the magical mountain-top city of Ronda.

Loved by the likes of Earnest Hemingway and Orson Welles, the city of dreams is truly a unique place in the world. It is here, not far from the breathtaking Roman bridge over El Tajo de Ronda, that you can find Chef Benito Gómez’ “El Bardal”. Enjoy a creative cuisine with a connection to local tradition. One of our favorite Michelin starred restaurants in Andalucía!

Cañabota* – Sevilla

In the heart of Sevilla, Andalucia’s capital, Cañabota is a wonderful example of how excellence can be achieved from apparent simplicity. By using ingredients of the highest quality and preparing dishes with the utmost care, maximum justice to the produce used is achieved. Enjoy these dishes in a gastro-bar ambiance with an open kitchen and a Japanese-style bar. 

A wonderful place to enjoy Andalucian fish and seafood from the Atlantic coast and a tasting menu that features even more elaborate dishes. 

El Lago* – Marbella

Located in the clubhouse of the Greenlife Golf complex, El Lago is a veritable oasis of peace and tranquillity in Marbella. From the summer terrace, you can admire views of a large lake, making this place the perfect backdrop for Nerja-born chef Fernando Villasclaras’ cuisine. 

El Lago has a young and dynamic team which has positioned the eatery among the elite of Andalucian cuisine and offers an authentic culinary experience based on seasonal produce with a predominance of vegetables and locally sourced ingredients.

The à la carte is complemented by a specific (and more informal) lunchtime option called Midi, and the organic-focused Sazón tasting menu. One of our favorite Michelin starred restaurants in Andalucía!

Código de Barra* – Cadiz

Located along a busy pedestrianised street in the historic quarter of Cádiz, Codigo de Barra offers a modern take on the colourful  3 000-year history and rich gastronomic culture of Cádiz.

This gastronomic oasis is a small restaurant owned by Dutch chef Leon Griffioen and his wife Paqui Marquez, who showcase their skills of adding a twist on regional classics, such as tortilla de camarones (prawn fritters).

Choose from two tasting menus—Cotinusa and Gadir—consisting of four or five starters, five mains, and a dessert and dive into the flavours of Cádiz’s cuisine from a contemporary perspective.

Michelin Starred Restaurants in Valencia: Where Michelin Star Restaurants are next level!

Quique Dacosta*** – Dénia

Quique Dacosta’s restaurant in Dénia, with its exceptional cuisine, is among as one of the best in the world and is, in fact, the only one in the Valencian Community recognised with three Michelin stars. 

Dacosta himself was awarded with the Gold Medal for Merit in the Fine Arts 2020 and at his triestrellado restaurant you can enjoy a tasting menu based on the iconic signature dishes of the house as well as avant-garde innovation in ingredients.

Dacosta is a strong advocate of his culture and territory and continues to underpin his entire culinary craft on local produce; and over the years has successfully turned the Quique Dacosta Restaurant into an internationally renowned mecca for haute cuisine.

Ricard Camarena** – Valencia

Found in the heart of Valencia, the Ricard Camarena Restaurant forms part of the refurbished Bombas Gens factory, which also houses an arts and culture centre. Here you can find creative cuisine without shrillness—simple in appearance but complicated in its preparation.

Camarena’s signature cuisine is solidly grounded in homegrown vegetables. In fact, the restaurant is considered one of the best plant-based restaurants in the world and Camarena’s commitment to sustainability has earned him the Cocinero del Año award (Madrid Fusión, 2021) for his “green activism”.

“Mediterraneanity and temporality,” is how Ricard Camarena Restaurant’s  gastronomic proposal  is defined, where the cuisine includes vibrant ingredients and the presentation is beautiful. One of our favorite Michelin starred restaurants in Valencia!

BonAmb** – Xàbia

For amazing cuisine and excellent service in a fantastic environment check out this unique restaurant, set in a restored country house with stunning views of the nearby Montgo mountain. 

With a setting as appealing as the menu, the latter comes courtesy of Alberto Ferruz, you’re on to a winner. 

Ferruz takes his foodie inspirations from the fresh, local Mediterranean produce that is available seasonally and is able to create both traditional and modern dishes depending on the situation. 

The BonAmb tasting menus are second to none and combined with an atmosphere of luxurious decadence, you are guaranteed a warm and friendly setting in which to savour and enjoy the most delectable of tasting menus (“La Taula”, “Els Testos” and “La Catedral”) where seafood takes centre stage.

La Salita* – Valencia

Cuisine of great finesse, this restaurant, occupying an impressive mansion in the city’s Ruzafa district, is unique in the area and if you’re looking to experience a true culinary adventure, this is a must-stop on your journey.

La Salita is run by Chef Begoña Rodrigo alongside her Dutch husband and all meals are prepared in collaboration with Mercado Central and local farmers. Not only that, Rodrigo pays painstaking attention to the presentation and transforms every dish into a true artwork.

La Salita is open from Monday to Friday only. At the weekend, the space operates under the name L’Hort al Nú, offering completely different cuisine. One of our favorite Michelin starred restaurants in Valencia!

Lienzo* – Valencia

Murcia-born chef María José Martínez, backed by her husband Juanjo Soria in the dining room, creates a creative modern Mediterranean cuisine that showcases and fully respects seasonal Valencian ingredients from its market gardens, mountains, and coastal waters. 

The husband and wife team proposes a modern Mediterranean cuisine where dishes, including delicious sauces and creams, are meticulously presented and feature several set menus: one “executive” option (Trazos) and two tasting menus (Pinceladas and Lienzo), any of which make for a magical dining experience.

We hope you’ve found Part I of this guide useful, and that it has served as an introduction to Spain’s rich culinary scene. What is your Michelin starred restaurants in Spain?

Don’t miss our next instalment where we continue this culinary adventure around Spain (Basque Country, Cataluña and Madrid)!