Bilbao is very famous for it's unique and excellent gastronomy and plenty of famous chefs are from here. In addition, the Basque country is the region with more Michelín Stars on the Iberian Peninsula and it has some of the best gastronomic schools. So, if you come to Bilbao you should try the most typical dishes from Bilbao. Here are some of them:

In 1835 a man wanted to order 100 cod but he made a mistake and he ordered 1 million cod. First he thought he wouldn't be able to afford all of them but, when one year later Bilbao entered a war, the only thing they had to eat was these 1 million cod. People started cooking them in many different ways and nowadays it is one of the most famous dishes of bilbao and it continues being prepared in different ways, for example: “bacalao al pil pil” or “bacalao a la vizcaina”. One of the restaurants in Bilbao that offers the best cod is the “Guria” and it is located in the main street.

Bacalao al pil pil Bacalao a la vizcaina

We call “pintxos” to a slice of bread with some food on top of it. It is very famous in the Basque Country and nowadays you can find them throughout Spain, although called tapas. In bilbao there are tons of bars which have the whole bar full of “pintxos” and you can go from one bar to another trying from each of them one or two “pintxos”. The areas from Bilbao in which you will find the best “pintxos” are El Casco Viejo, Indautxu and Abando.

“La Carolina” is one of the most famous sweets from Bilbao. It is a puff-pastry tart with meringue and chocolate on top of it and they sell really good ones at a pastry shop called “Don Manuel”.


The butter bun is also very famous in Bilbao and actually they only sell it there. As its name indicates it is a bun filled with butter and is has nsome sugar on top of it. The pastry shop “Martina de Zuricalday”, which is in indautxu is very well known for its butter buns.

One difference to be aware of is that in Spain, we eat quite late. Lunch is normally at 2pm and we quite often do not eat dinner before 10pm. However, most restaurants are open to serve food earlier. Most restaurants offer, as well as a normal menu, a “Menu del Dia”. This is a set menu with two or three choices, and includes one bottle of water or wine per person, all for a set price (which ranges from 8 euros up). This is a very cheap way to eat. Please note it is illegal to sell alcohol to under 18s.