Looking for the best places to eat in Santa Pola?
If you like tapas you can find some of the best places to eat in Santa Pola right on the Playa and near the town centre. There are plenty of options from cheap bars to expensive restaurants but our focus in this article is the most reasonably priced places to eat tapas in Santa Pola - so order a cerveza, relax in the sun and enjoy.
If you're looking for another amazing experience just off Santa Pola see our post on the Island of Tabarca here.
The word “Tapa” directly translates as “Cover”. Originally just a slice of ham over the top of a glass of wine, to protect the drink from flies and grime, Spanish King Alfonso the 10th took the custom to another level after he was advised by his physician to eat portions of food with wine between all of his meals. (Don’t you wish you had a doctor who prescribed that?!) King Alfonso enjoyed it so much that when recovered, he made a decree that henceforth all wine be served alongside a small bite to eat. And thus tapas was born.
*This decree was doubly useful, as the normal poor folk often replaced lunch with an alcoholic drink and had developed a habit of heading back to work a little merry. No wonder he was later dubbed Alfonso the Wise!
In Granada, tapas is so generous and delicious that it amounts to a whole meal and it’s pretty much impossible to get drunk (we still gave it our best shot!)
During our trip to Santa Pola, a lovely little town by the sea, near Alicante, we stumbled upon a special competition held by the local government. Our amazing Wimdu host José Manuel left us leaflets about a tapas extravaganza going on in the town while we were visiting. For the absolute bargain of €2.00 they would present you with the best tapas Santa Pola had to offer, all made with fresh, local produce. Ok it’s not free but it’s still great value and even more fun!
We did our best to test them all out, so we could bring you our recommendations for the best places to eat in Santa Pola.
This list is in no particular order because every dish we tasted was beyond delicious.
Meson Cervantes, Calle Cervantes 17, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
A traditional Spanish restaurant, with high ceilings, based right on the corner of Calle Cervantes. Make your choice to eat dinner in the clean crisp restaurant, or, if the weather is warm (Ha!) enjoy your dinner in the cute outdoor area on the roadside. We sampled the ‘Gambas Villaroy con crema de marisco’ A crispy coated lobstery bon bon served with a golden seafood bisque. It was light and crispy and flavoursome without being fishy.
Meson Cervantes serve delicious tapas at reasonable prices and some of the best croquettes we’ve tasted in Spain.
Mi Barra, Ave de los Baños, Santa Pola, Spain
A cool and trendy restaurant located on the Marina. Their competition tapas consisted of ‘Gazpacho de mero’ and ‘Nachos a la brasa’. The gazpacho was a spicy mix of seafood in what tasted like a meaty broth. Even Bryony’s Dad, who is not hugely adventurous when it comes to seafood, enjoyed it immensely. The nachos were hot and gooey with a rich beef chilli.
Mi Barra also receives a special mention from us in the best places to eat in Santa Pola because the amazing chef bought us a massive plate of freshly steamed clams and whole barbecued artichoke to ‘test’ compliments of the kitchen. They tasted sublime!
To top it all off Mi Barra’s outside terrace receives the sun all day and is perfect for chilling in the evening with a great view of the harbour, and the fishermen sorting their nets ready for the next day.
Tinta Roja, Calle Espronceda, 2, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
Nestled down a road just off the main playa is Tinta Roja. Their top tapas consisted of ‘Suquet de piex’ Tinta Roja’s take on a Catalan fish stew and ‘Carrillera Iberica al vina’ pork cheeks braised in red wine and by far the best pork we tasted in Valencia - the meat was so tender. It’s a lovely bar that makes a mean tinto de verano.
All drinks are reasonably priced and come served with a little tapa of crisps or some charcuterie. Delicious.
Capricho Bar Carrer Garcia Braceli, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
Right next to Tinta Roja is Capricho Bar, they share the tables and we think they share the staff too. Here the competition tapas were ‘Brocheta Moruna de atun’ which is marinated tuna steak and cous cous, it was perfectly cooked, flavour packed, and something we’ll definitely be making at home. ‘Caballa’ the second dish was on another level. Locally caught fresh grilled mackerel coupled with guacamole of an almost mousse like texture, olive, red pepper and crisp fresh spring onions.
Los Billares, calle espoz y mina n19º, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
This bright and modern little bar sits on a quiet street with a tent for a terrace stretching into the road. Don’t let this put you off. The bar staff are total superstars and go above and beyond to help you. Their tapas is by far the most unusual on Tapiex’s list and therefore joins the others as one of the best places to eat in Santa Pola.
Vela de Baclao, served in a giant wine glass is a salt cod and potato cake with a creamy cheese sauce and rocket salad, while their second dish ‘chocolate con churros’ (usually a long doughnut with chocolate sauce) is actually an unfathomably light and crispy deep fried potato with a mug sized cup of delicious, rich and gooey gravy to dunk it in.
An absolute winner in our eyes. Heston Blumenthal style.
Dos Hermanos Puerto, Avda Granada No 4 | Puerto DE 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
This place really blew us away. It’s right on the main strip in Santa Pola just back off the read opposite LizArran. The sign says Kebabs, Pizzas and Burgers and is illuminated at night. It looks like a late-night take-away but they say never judge a book by its cover. The wine is rich and cheap, and the tapas they were showcasing wouldn’t look out of place in a Michelin Restaurant!
‘Fusion de sabores con nostalgia’ (the featured image for this post) is a whole grilled prawn with boiled egg, smoked salmon, anchovy and almonds served on crispy bread and garnished with fresh strawberry (new fav combo) The second ‘El festin en la huerta’ which tasted like an amazing twist on a bacon sandwich and consisted of tender grilled pork, bacon, cherry tomatoes, home-made ketchup, charred onion and carrot, and believe it or not - grilled pear. Wow!
La Sideria, Calle Sacramento, 15, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
Right next to the fort in the centre of Santa Pola is the super stylish and chic La Sideria. As the name suggests they specialise in local Ciders. We would say this is one of the more unique restaurants in Santa Pola. They have a gimmick when it comes to serving the tangy local cider too, each bottle comes with its own tap which is brought over to your table and carbonates the cider like an old soda stream!
They also specialise in local artisan cheeses which of course you can’t say no to. The board may look small compared to some establishments, but rest assured the cheese is rich and strong and you may struggle to finish the portion!
Boulevard Puerto, Paseo Marina Miramar, s/n, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante, Spain
Another of the restaurants in Santa Pola marina. The whole menu here is generous and familiar. But order tapas from their showcase menu and prepare to have your taste buds thrown into uproar.
‘Buñuelo Recycled’ were a savoury version of buñelo - traditional deep-fried wheat balls, and came stuffed full of parmesan and Iberico Ham, they were accompanied by crispy shards of prawn crackers which added a strange but not unpleasant crunch to the dish.
The second tapas was ‘Albondiga Boulevard Puerto’ - fish meatballs. They were rich, heavy, well-seasoned and garnished with squid ink onions, and the accompanying patatas bravas were delightful.
Santa Pola is only a small little town compared with it's big sister Alicante up the road, but it the number of glorious little bars and authentic dishes you are able to sample will see you easily putting on a few kilo’s during your stay!
What’s your experience of the best places to eat on the Costa Blanca? Let us know in the comments or drop us a message on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter! We love hearing from you!
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