Top 50+ Best Malta Restaurants for 2020

Looking for a few good tips for the best restaurants in Malta and Gozo?

You’ve come to the right place.

Both locals and tourists are spoiled for choice when it comes to eating out in Malta and the quality of food served in local restaurants has improved a lot over the past 5-10 years. You can find gems hidden in the quietest towns and enjoy good food at reasonable prices even in popular tourist destinations.

Having said that, not all restaurants are equal and that’s why I created this guide to the best restaurants in Malta: To help you pick the best options.

Food is obviously an important part of travelling. Apart from being a basic necessity to find a place you can eat well and not risk any nasty holiday surprises, it’s often also a big part of a country’s culture.

Malta is no exception.

Good food isn’t hard to find here and Maltese food reflects on the Maltese people in general: Genuine, hearty and prepared with passion.

Before you dive in to shortlist a few places, here are a few notes to get you started:

  • I’ve listed my recommendations by location further below, to make things easier and you can click/tap on the “My review” section for each to get more info.
  • You’ll find restaurants that suit most budgets, with an indicator to give you an idea of how much a regular starter/dinner/drinks meal will cost you, with €€ being in the €25-30 per person bracket for a main course and drinks.
  • Maltese street names are listed (locally English translations are used sometimes) for you to be able to easily locate them on Google Maps.

If you’ve already had a good experience at a restaurant in Malta or Gozo that’s not listed here, leave a comment (at the bottom of the page) and let me know!

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My top 10 Malta restaurants for 2019

Hammett's Macina Restaurant in Senglea is a great choice for fine dining.

1. Hammett’s Maċina Restaurant

 Triq Il-31 ta’ Marzu, Senglea | +356 2779 4171 | €€€€ |  hammettsmacina.com

Hammett’s Maċina is one of my favourite restaurants in Malta right now.

Located in a place that’s not necessarily known as a dining out destination, this restaurant along the marina in Senglea (part of the Three Cities) is a great choice for fine dining.

A refined menu of flavourful dishes, a good choice of both foreign and local wine and attentive staff make for a lovely dining experience.

2. Taproom

53a Old Theatre Street, Valletta | +356 2749 1316 | €€€ | www.taproomvalletta.com

Taproom is a great little restaurant in the heart of Malta’s capital that serves a blend of Mediterranean, European and Fusion flavours. Offering a good selection of local and foreign wines, they also mix great cocktails.

Very consistent and never disappoints, it’s a no-brainer for an enjoyable dining experience with friends and family. 

3. Guze Bistro

22, Old Bakery Street, Valletta | +356 2123 9686 | €€€ | www.guzevalletta.com

Guze has been going strong as one of the top restaurants in the capital city, with a varied menu of Mediterranean flavours and high-quality ingredients for a very nice fine dining experience.

Despite having a choice of interesting dishes and a gourmet take on staples, the prices charged are very reasonable for the quality served. Highly recommended.

4. The Fork & Cork restaurant

20 Telgha Tas-Saqqajja, Rabat | +356 7904 7043 | €€-€€€

The Fork & Cork is an easy recommendation to make. A little gem located along the steps on the edge of Rabat and Mdina, this restaurant serves high-quality dishes with Mediterranean flavours.

The menu offers good choice while the service is excellent and the whole experience demonstrates an attention to detail. I’m never disappointed here. 

5. Patrick’s Lounge

 Europe Street, Victoria, Gozo | +356 2156 6667 | €€€€ | www.patrickstmun.com

Whenever I go to Gozo I try to make it a point to dine out at Patrick’s Lounge. It’s without doubt one of the best restaurants on the island.

Very much a fine dining option, chef Patrick serves up high-quality dishes on a varied menu of Mediterranean flavours. The service is excellent and the wine list extensive.

6. Sciacca Grill

 South Street, Valletta | +356 2123 7222 | €€€-€€€€ | www.sciaccamalta.com
 Triq Santu Wistin, St. Julian’s | +356 2133 1310

Sciacca Grill is one of the best restaurants in Valletta for meat lovers, with high-quality cuts of steak, freshly prepared and grilled sausages and more. It’s a popular choice, especially on weekends but also on weekdays so book a couple of days in advance.

Another one of their restaurants is located in St. Julian’s.

7. Tartarun

 Xatt is-Sajjieda, Marsaxlokk | +356 2165 8089 | €€€-€€€€ | www.tartarun.com

There are plenty of seafood restaurants to choose from in Marsaxlokk, but few do the fresh catch of the day justice like Tartarun.

A firm favourite among locals, this is a well-established restaurant in Malta with a great reputation.

8. La Vecchia Napoli

Tower Road, Sliema | +356 2134 3434 | €€ | www.vecchianapoli.com
Vecchia Napoli, Triq is-Salini, Salina Bay (outskirts of Qawra) | +356 2125 5555

Looking for some of the best pizza around? You’ve found the right place to go to. La Vecchia Napoli has a reputation for serving some of the crunchiest, tastiest pizza in the area.

The top tip for pizza choice: Try the Capo Di Monte (Mozzarella Fior di Latte, Parmigiano, Crema di Funghi e Tartufi, Prosciutto – awesome!).

9. The Chophouse

Tigné Point, Sliema | +356 2060 3355 | €€€-€€€€ | chophouse.com.mt

If you’re a meat lover you’ll enjoy The Chophouse. Although they offer a variety of meats that go beyond just beef, their variety of steaks are hard to beat.

Very tasty, good service and a great location. Ask to be seated outside if you’re in Malta during the high season, to enjoy the views of Valletta across Marsamxett Harbour.

10. Two Buoys Bistro

106, Triq Spinola, Saint Julian’s | +356 2122 2221 | €€-€€€ | two-buoys-bistro.com

Two Buoys are a great restaurant with a varied choice of Mediterranean flavours. Specialised in seafood, they also offer different Vegan and Vegetarian options.

Outdoor seating offers nice views out over Spinola Bay. Great dining experience, good choice of food and reasonably priced.

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Tips and guide for eating out in Malta

  • Some restaurants are busier than others, so you’re best off calling in advance to make a reservation. Ignore email addresses – Few restaurants take online bookings, let alone via email. Your best bet is a phone call, or in some cases a message through their Facebook page.
  • Most restaurants open for dinner at 6 or 7pm, and will rarely take calls for reservations during the day. Either try your luck if it’s a normal weekday or call the evening before.
  • Even in tourist hotspots, it’s not common to be billed for cover charges. If you do encounter such restaurants, obviously don’t feel obliged to tip.
  • Speaking of tipping: Yes, tipping is common and usually a tip of 10% is just fine.
  • Major credit cards are widely accepted at restaurants in Malta.
  • Saturday nights are – as you’d expect – the busiest, closely followed by Sunday lunch and often you’d need to make your reservation several days in advance for the more popular restaurants.
  • When you get offered specials, even though you can ask for price estimate they will always tell you it depends on the weight of the protein chosen. You can count on having to pay higher prices than you’d expect in those instances but you can always ask in advance.
  • Do you have special dietary requirements? Unless clearly stated on their website and/or menu, it’s advised to call and ask whether your restaurant of choice caters for your needs.

FAQs

Is the food in Malta good?

Yes, overall food served in Malta is good and there’s a good standard of quality for restaurant. Most of the cuisine served is Meditteranean, so flavourful savouries that typically consist of meats and seafood, pizza and pasta, salads and risottos and mostly sweet desserts.

Is Malta expensive for food and drink?

Although cheap lunches and dinners that are of good quality can be found (mostly in villages away from the popular tourist destinations), prices are reasonable.

How much does a meal cost?

Starters are usually between €6-10 each, mains vary in price from €10-30 (from pizza/pasta to steak) and desserts cost anywhere between €4 and €8.

What do they eat in Malta?

The Maltese generally eat a typically Mediterranean diet and traditionally eat fairly large portions of food. Pasta, pizza, pastry but also rice-based dishes are commonly served, while beef, pork, lamb and chicken are popular choices as well.

As a tourist, there’s plenty of other choice as well, however, from regular fast food to Asian tastes.

Often in summer you’ll find simple snacks like local (hard-crusted) bread with olive oil and tomato paste or crackers with bigilla dip (a thick, brown paste made of beans that tastes better than it looks).

More “exotic” meat like that of rabbits, quail and even horse meat can be found in restaurants serving Maltese food. More info here: 33 Examples of Traditional Maltese Food

Is the food in Malta halal?

Most restaurants in Malta do not serve halal food but halal options are increasing steadily, for example:

  • Hugo’s Burger Bar (specific items on the menu) in St. Julian’s
  • Suruchi (Indian) in St. Julian’s
  • Ali Baba (Lebanese) in Gżira
  • Sharma (various cuisines) in St. Julian’s
  • Falafal Street in Valletta
  • House of Spice in Buġibba
  • Turkish kebab shops (popular all around Malta)

Valletta restaurants

Malta’s capital city of Valletta is home to some of the best restaurants around the Maltese islands.

Cheap eats are hard to find for dining out, however, there’s no shortage of restaurants that offer great value in terms of quality and overall experience.

Malata

 St. George’s Square, Valletta
+356 2746 5001 | €€-€€€

My review

Malata is the type of restaurant that’s better in summer than in winter, and that has nothing to do with their food or service, it’s simply the location.

The restaurant itself is located in a cellar at the edge of St. George’s Square, opposite the Presidential Palace, which in winter months isn’t the cosiest place to be.

Come summer, however, sitting at one of their outside tables on the square does the good quality of their food justice and makes for a very enjoyable dining experience.

Although mainly serving Mediterranean dishes, there’s also some French-inspired food that’s well worth trying. Their onion soup is amazing – and I’m not a soup person at all!

Scoglitti

 8 Triq il-Lanca Marsamxett, Valletta
+356 2123 5548 | €€€

My review

Tucked away at Valletta’s northern seafront near the Sliema ferry, Scoglitti is a lovely bright, modern restaurant that specialises in fresh seafood.

If you and your company are specifically looking for deliciously prepared fresh fish in Valletta, this is a great choice.

Specialising in seafood, with traditional Sicilian influences, you can enjoy dinner here with a nice view and in a quiet location on the edge of the city.

Pastaus

 123 Old Theatre Street, Valletta
+356 2702 3141 | €€

My review

Pastaus is the restaurant in town for a mean pasta dish.

Run by Italians, these guys prepare home made, fresh pasta with super flavourful sauces.

The pasta options are varied, so you can pick gluten-free and even vegan-friendly options.

It’s a small place inside but with a few tables out on the streets during the warmer months of the year, it’s a fun and casual dining option.

Da Pippo Trattoria

 136, Melita Street, Valletta
+356 2124 8029 | €€€

My review

Da Pippo is something a little bit different, in the sense that it’s a real dining experience.

I recommend giving the restaurant a try for two reasons: 1) The quality of the food (super tasty, well cooked, Italian – fish, veal, pasta are staples) and 2) the atmosphere.

It’s a small, cosy place that fills up with mostly locals and offers charm in its chaos and business with the chatter of people having a good time in good company and with good food.

Two important things to note:

  1. This restaurant opens for lunch only
  2. My only grip with this place is the fact that the bill isn’t itemised so you have no idea what you’re paying for. Even though the price you end up paying isn’t exhorbitant, not knowing what you pay for is a little… odd.

Looking for more restaurants in Valletta?

I’ve listed my full top 10 for Valletta here: Top 10 Best Valletta restaurants guide

Restaurants in St. Paul’s Bay, Buġibba and Qawra

St. Paul’s Bay, Buġibba and Qawra are three neighbouring towns where plenty of restaurants can be found that are worthwhile trying out.

But if you’re looking for an enjoyable dinner don’t stick to just these towns and explore a few places on the outskirts, in places like Xemxija and Salina. You can find a few great eateries there as well.

Zeus

 Xemxija Hill, Xemxija
+356 2157 8585 | €€

My review

Zeus is one of those restaurants that establish a good level of service and food and remain consistent in terms of quality.

They serve Greek dishes, which means good meats and fish but also a select choice of vegetarian-friendly options.

Add to that the very hospitable owners and staff and you have a restaurant you’ll want to visit for dinner more than once.

Gillieru

 Church street, St. Paul’s Bay
+356 2226 6200 | €€-€€€

My review

If it’s fresh seafood you’re looking for, you’re at the right place with Gillieru in St. Paul’s Bay.

Known even locally as a good seafood restaurant, they do fresh fish, octopus, calamari, etc. justice.

Although personally, I feel that sometimes their food is pretty pricey and the restaurant itself could do with a lick of paint, the food itself never disappoints.

Lovage Bistro

 Triq L-Imhar, Qawra
+356 7959 4098 | €€€

My review

It’s not uncommon to find great little restaurants in the most unassuming of places in Malta.

Lovage Bistro is a perfect example of that.

Located in a regular residential street, in a side road from main street Triq it-Turisti, Lovage Bistro offers a lovely dining experience with flavourful dishes.

Duo Restaurant & Bar

 Triq Il-Qawra, Qawra
+356 2157 8236 | €€€

My review

I’ve dined at Duo a few times over the past couple of years and both the food and service have been very good each time.

With a variety of high-quality Mediterranean dishes, it’s a great place for some proper dining out, with a nice selection of wines and a lovely setting.

lthough a little pricier than other restaurants, you get good value and I definitely recommend giving them a try.

Ta’ Cassia

 Triq il-Katakombi, Salina
+356 7989 8293 | €€€

My review

This restaurant is another one of my favourites. They’re located just outside of Qawra, at the start of the coast road that takes you to St. Julian’s in a small place called Salina (a name earned thanks to the nearby salt pans).

Ta’ Cassia are an established name in the local restaurant scene and is a family-run establishment, with excellent food, consistent quality and very friendly service who are happy to accommodate any special requests. They offer a good selection of meats and fresh fish – great Mediterranean food.

There’s nothing wrong with the decor either, with the restaurant housed in an old-style farmhouse with a lovely garden at the back where food is served in summer.

La Stalla

 Triq it-Turisti, Buġibba
+356 2157 1368 | €€

My review

Quaint little family-run restaurant in Qawra (one of the few left in the area) that serve good food at reasonable prices.

The type of food is Mediterranean, with a selection of salads, plates of pasta, pizzas, steaks, fresh fish, etc.

The interior could do with a bit of a facelift but with food being the priority it’s worth paying a visit.

Il Grappolo

 Triq Il-Korp Tal-Pijunieri, Buġibba
+356 2157 8236 | €€€

My review

Il Grappolo is a family-run Italian restaurant that serves classical Italian food.

Freshly prepared, the food served is excellent, while the staff are attentive.

My personal favourite is their Tagliata (sliced steak). Worth giving a try if you’re planning to stay in the area!

Giuseppi’s Bar & Bistro

 Salina Resort, Salina
+356 2157 4882 | €€€-€€€€

My review

Giuseppi’s is one of the restaurants at the Salini Resort and although it hasn’t quite maintained the level of excellence I was used to when they were located in Mellieħa, it’s still a great dining option.

Whether you order from the a la carte menu or opt for one of the specials of the day, there’s a good variety of interesting dishes, full of flavour and different concepts.

It’s definitely one of the pricier choices, but well worth it in my opinion.

Eating out in Sliema

There’s plenty of choice in Sliema when it comes to restaurants, but that doesn’t mean quality is top wherever you go. These are a few (mostly casual) restaurants to try.

Cafe Cuba

 The Strand, Sliema
+356 2010 1313 | €€

My review

Cafe Cuba in Sliema is a great little place to grab a quick bite for lunch with a selection of pasta, pizza, salads, wraps and baguettes, etc.

It’s usually pretty busy but if you’re lucky or have 5 minutes to wait it’s worth giving a try.

Service is usually pretty quick and prices reasonable considering the location. (Places in Sliema are known to charge a little more than in other places on the island).

You can find Cafe Cuba here as well:

Spinola Bay, St. Julian’s
Triq Valletta, Mosta (part of Pama shopping village)

La Cuccagna

47 Amery Street, Sliema
+356 2134 6703 | €€

My review

La Cuccagna has a reputation for serving genuine, hearty food and is a great place if you like pizza and pasta, with a mostly Mediterranean menu.

Gets good ratings and is a solid choice for a good but inexpensive meal.

Il-Merill

 9, Triq San Vincenz, Sliema
+356 7960 4770 | €€

My review

Il-Merill is a small, family-run restaurant tucked in a side street away from the hustle and bustle of the main street.

Their menu consists of a mix of Mediterranean and Maltese dishes and is highly rated, also for its friendly service.

Fratelli la Bufala Malta

 Tigne Point, Sliema
+356 2138 7888 | €€€

My review

Fratelli La Bufala is a great option for tasty Italian food in Sliema.

Fresh ingredients cooked to perfection, whether you choose meat (they specialise in buffalo), chicken, pasta, pizza or salads.

The downside? It’s a very busy place and service suffers sometimes. (Also: Be sure to book a table in advance!)

Tiffany’s Bistro

18a, Tigne Seafront, Sliema
+356 9958 6280 | €€

My review

Tiffany’s Bistro is a lovely little eatery for casual dining, located at the Sliema Ferries seafront.

Very much a mix of pizzas, pasta, gourmet burgers and other mains off the grill.

Tasty food, good service and great views. What’s not to like?

Save some space for dessert, trust me!

Image credit: Glutenfreelivingmalta.com

The best restaurants in St. Julian’s

St. Julian’s is a bit of a restaurant hotspot, attracting both tourists and locals for dining out. Although styles and cuisines can be very similar, these are some individual stand-out restaurants I recommend trying.

Hard Rock Cafe

 Level 2, Baystreet Complex, St Julian’s
+356 2138 0983 | €€€

My review

I know, Hard Rock is a franchise and all, but they deserve a spot in my Top 50.

Consistently good food and friendly service make me a regular for a casual meal. And their cocktails are pretty good too.

You can also find them at:

Vault 17 Valletta Waterfront, Floriana

Pepe Nero – BistroLounge

 48, Main Street, St. Julian’s
+356 2133 3330 | €€€

My review

Pepe Nero have been around in Malta for a while, with a few restaurants in other places aside from St. Julian’s.

With a blend of European, Italian and Fusion flavours, they offer an interesting, varied menu of hearty flavours.

With a great view of Balluta it’s a great option for an enjoyable dinner.

You can also find Pepe Nero (with different types of cuisine) at:

Trejqet il-Veccja, St. Paul’s Bay (Shellshack & Grill)
Vault 18, Valletta Waterfront, Floriana (Meat House)
Triq TaL-Ibragg, Swieqi (Lebanese Fusion)

Il Pirata Restaurant

 Triq Paceville, St. Julian’s
+356 2137 5827 | €€€

My review

il-Pirata is a fairly new restaurant on the scene that’s quickly building a good reputation for the quality of its Italian food.

Don’t worry, despite its name, there won’t be any pirate-clad waiters serving you.

Sale e Pepe

 Portomaso Yacht Marina, St. Julian’s
+356 2138 3345 | €€€

My review

With a good selection of high-quality seafood, pasta dishes and pizza, Sale e Pepe is one of the best options for Italian food in the area.

It’s also a good option for lunch, with a view over the marina of Portomaso, one of the island’s tallest buildings.

The Avenue

 Triq Gort, St. Julian’s
+356 2135 1753 | €€

My review

The Avenue has been around for a while now and continues to provide a great food experience, with a good variety of Mediterranean dishes at reasonable prices and a nice, homely atmosphere.

Good value!

Emperor of India

 Elia Zammit Street, St. Julian’s
+356 2137 4595 | €€€

My review

My favourite Indian restaurant in Malta, with tasty food, mean curries and very friendly and helpful staff.

They’re one of the longest established Indian restaurants in Malta and have managed to maintain high quality dining for years.

Caviar & Bull

 Corinthia San Gorg Hotel, St. Julian’s
+356 2759 3301 | €€€€

My review

Caviar & Bull are one of the few fine dining options in the area, with an interesting and varied menu with Mediterranean flavours at its core.

Apart from the sublime food and great selection of wines, there’s a great view out over St. George’s Bay to enjoy a great dinner over.

Well worth trying if you’re not on a budget and looking for gourmet dining.

Carob Tree Food Court

 Triq Mikiel Ang Borg, St. Julian’s
+356 9947 0460 | €€-€€€

My review

Part of a small retail and residential complex, this is a food court with different local restaurants serving a variety of cuisines from Italian to Asian to Indian, fine steaks and burgers, seafood, and more.

Great option for a group with different tastes.

Badass Burgers in St. Julian's serve a mean burger.

Badass Burgers

 1, Triq San Gorg, St. Julian’s
+356 2138 4066 | €€

My review

Badass is one of the few proper burger places around in Malta and they’ve managed to maintain their standards of big, juicy burgers with a creative selection of options.

This St. Julian’s based restaurant has a nice open air backyard and the service is quick and friendly. The burgers themselves are a little pricier than you’d expect, but the portion sizes are generous. Never been disappointed here.

Restaurants in Mellieħa

Known for its beautiful natural surroundings and nearby beaches, Mellieħa is a popular destination for beach goers.

That doesn’t mean you’ll only be able find casual or fast food places there. The following options can be enjoyed all year round and serve high-quality Mediterranean flavours.

Rebekah’s Restaurant

 12, Triq It-Tgham, Mellieħa
+356 2152 1145 | €€€€

My review

Set in a rustic old farmhouse, this romantic restaurant on the edge of Mellieħa offers a great ambience with genuine food and high-quality Mediterranean dishes.

Although not particularly budget-friendly, its a la carte menu is balanced with a nice selection of local fish, beef and pasta dishes.

Mitħna

 58 Triq Il-Kbira, Mellieħa
+356 2152 0404 | €€€€

My review

Mitħna is a more upmarket restaurant, in the heart of Mellieħa that consistently racks up great reviews thanks to their delicious dishes and varied menu.

Paired with a fine wine from their quality wine list, it’s a great dining experience to enjoy.

Tosca

 Solana Hotel & Spa, Mellieħa
+356 7960 4770 | €€€

My review

Tosca is a great little Italian restaurant that forms part of one of the larger hotels in town: The Solana Hotel & Spa.

Their varied menu consists of pizza and pasta staples as you’d expect, but also risottis, seafood and a choice fine meats.

Super friendly staff and a modern but homely interior make for a nice dining experience.

Best seafood restaurants in Marsaxlokk

 

Marsaxlokk is one of Malta’s few real fisherman’s villages. Although it’s become a bit of a tourist hotspot, there’s good choice when it comes to restaurants serving fresh seafood.

For local diners, Marsaxlokk is most popular for Sunday lunches, but evenings tend to be quieter.

Here’s my choice for the best restaurants in town:

Ta’ Victor Restauant

 Misrah Madonna ta’ Pompei, Marsaxlokk
+356 9947 4249 | €€€

My review

Ta’ Victor is another great choice for sampling some of the fresh catch brought into the harbour daily.

Offering a friendly service, good seating on their nice terrace outside along the seafront it’s a lovely place for a good meal.

La Nostra Padrona

 87 Xatt Is-Sajjieda, Marsaxlokk
+356 2766 7720 | €€€

My review

If you’re looking for variety in seafood, la Nostra Padrona never disappoint.

Their chef really manages to prepare tasty seafood dishes with the catch of the day at reasonable prices.

Fresh fish can be cooked in a variety of ways on request and whether you’re seated inside or out it’s a nice place to eat out.

This is a popular restaurant so book in advance!

Roots Restaurant

 67 Xatt Is-Sajjieda, Marsaxlokk
+356 2165 3205 | €€€

My review

Roots Restaurant is a more modern seafood restaurant in Marsaxlokk, also located along the seafront.

With a lot of competition in the area it’s not easy to stand out but both kitchen and waiting staff make this an easy restaurant to keep returning to.

Super flavourful food, attentive and friendly staff and nice views make for a great combination and these guys get it all very right.

Other restaurants in Malta

Although the busier parts of Malta offer a good choice of restaurants, if you venture out of the larger towns you can find a few real gems around.

These are a few options I recommend:

Trattoria AD 1530

 Misrah il-Kunsill, Mdina
+356 2145 0560 | €€€

My review

Trattoria AD 1530 forms part of the prestigious Xara Palace hotel and is a good option for both lunch and dinner.

Having a covered outdoor terrace, the menu at Trattoria AD 1530 is varied but their strengths are the pizzas, pasta dishes and salads. Located in the Silent City of Mdina, it’s a great place for a quiet lunch or dinner.

Tully’s Fusion

 64 Triq Dingli-Cornelio, Senglea
+356 9962 7301 | €€€

My review

Tully’s Fusion is located along the waterfront at Senglea, one of the Three Cities, and is a newcomer in the area.

This family-run restaurant provides a fresh take on home-made food, offering a fusion take on dishes from across Europe. Delicious, hearty food and a casual environment in a relatively quiet part of Malta.

The best restaurants in Gozo

 

Gozo has plenty to offer when it comes to eating out, with several options in popular seaside places like Marsalforn and Xlendi, but also in quieter villages around the island.

These are a few options to consider in addition to Patrick’s Lounge from my Top 10 at the top of the page.

The Boathouse

 Xatt Ix-Xlendi, Xlendi
+356 2756 7207 | €€€

My review

The Boathouse has a solid reputation for serving delicious meats and fresh seafood.

While a larger menu at a slightly more upmarket restaurant doesn’t instil much confidence in me, I’ve never been disappointed with my choice and have dined here regularly over the past five years or so.

Tmun Mġarr

 Martino Garces Str, Mġarr
+356 2156 6276 | €€€

My review

Tmun is a great little restaurant in Gozo, overlooking the harbour at Mġarr.

Chef Paul Buttigieg and his team serve a variety of dishes with a varied menu and specialising in deliciously prepared fresh fish.

This is a family-run business and it shows – they care about your dining experience and making sure you will want to return to have another taste off their menu.

Pulena

 Il-Menqa Marina Str, Marsalforn
+356 7960 4770 | €€

My review

At the little harbour of Marsalforn you can find a few small restaurants lined up next to each other, each with a similar look and small terrace outside.

Pulena is situated somewhere in the middle of that bunch and from the outside you wouldn’t suspect that it’s anything out of the ordinary.

You’d be wrong.

This restaurant serves the tastiest Italian food on the island, with impeccable service and at great value. The better half and I have tried and tested their seafood, pizza and pasta and all got top marks in our books. A real surprise and easy recommendation.

The best restaurants for Maltese food

Nenu the Artisan Baker

 143, St Dominic Street, Valletta
+356 2258 1535 | €€€

My review

Nenu the Artisan Baker is a highly popular restaurant in Valletta, offering a wide variety of typically Maltese foods and dishes that go beyond baked foods. Very tasty, genuine ingredients and even the restaurant itself is a good establishment for a quality dinner

When I was there with a few Maltese friends there seemed to be a sense of nostalgia towards some of the dishes they had last tasted when cooked by their Nanna (grandmother). There’s no better rating of the quality of Maltese food than that, I suppose!

Ta` Marija

 71, Triq il Kostituzjoni, Mosta
+356 2143 4444 | €€€

My review

Ta` Marija in Mosta is a family-run restaurant and a recommendation for an evening out rather than just dinner with Maltese food.

The food served is mostly Maltese, of very good quality, and over and above guests are provided with entertainment in the form of traditional musical performances by traditionally clad performers. It makes for a different type of dinner experience and well worth a try.

The staff are very friendly, helpful and happy to meet any dietary requirements and it’s not surprising the restaurant has won several awards over the years, as well as good reviews from its diners.

Ta` Kris

 80 Sqaq Il Fawwara, Sliema
+356 2133 7367 | €€€

My review

Whereas in Sliema you’ll come across restaurants and bars that are a little touristy, Ta` Kris is a little gem in a spot where you’d least expect it: In a small alley in the middle of a shopping area.

It’s a cool little restaurant with a warm interior and a few tables set up outside in the alley when the weather suits dining outside. The food is of high quality and the service never disappoints either.

Gululu

 133 Triq Spinola, St. Julian’s
+356 2133 3431 | €€-€€€

My review

One of the few restaurants serving Maltese food in the area, Gululu do a good job of serving a selection of typically Maltese dishes in one of the nicest dining locations on the island of Malta, at Spinola Bay (St. Julian’s).

I wouldn’t say theirs is the best restaurant for Maltese food on the island, but the quality is good, prices fair and you can’t beat the location either.

Tal Petut

 20, Triq Pacifiku Scicluna, Birgu
+356 2189 1169 | €€€

My review

Tal Petut is a unique little restaurant and a food experience I highly recommend you try.

Chef Donald and his team serve a variety of traditionally prepared Maltese dishes and bite-sizes tastes, set within an old townhouse in the heart of the old village of Birgu (part of the Three Cities).

The staff is attentive, always happy to tell you a little more about the food they serve you and it’s a lovely dining experience in a homely setting.

Diar il-Bniet

121 Triq Il-Kbira, Dingli
+356 2762 0727 | €€-€€€

My review

Diar il-Bniet have probably developed the best concept for a Maltese food restaurant with typical local dishes.

A lot of the food they serve comes from ingredients grown on the fields in the surrounding areas and are also sold separately in the small shop.

If you decide to dine for lunch or dinner you get a good choice of typically flavourful Maltese food, guided by the welcoming waiting staff.

I’ve dined here several times with visiting friends and all enjoyed the experience. Although it’s not the easiest to reach location, South of Rabat, it’s worth the short excursion.

DISCLAIMER: My reviews of the above restaurants were collected in late 2018. Restaurants come and go and change owners regularly, so although I update these reviews whenever I’m aware of changes in quality, I cannot guarantee this info is 100% accurate and up to date all the time.

Would you like to help?

If you’ve tried any of my recommendations and agree or disagree, please leave a comment below and let me and other readers know!

24 Comments

  1. We are coming to Malta end of October and we would enjoy food and culture experiences with locals, as well as updated recommendations for restaurants that would cover a range of different styles: traditional, street food and more creative Maltese cuisine.

    Reply
    • Great timing Marina, I’ve just made a few updates to this page so you’ll find everything you’re looking for here!

      Reply
  2. We have had lovely experiences in the Ocean Basket restaurant in Qawra. It was so good we went back multiple times! The seafood sharing platters were incredibly good value, extremely delicious and fresh, we even had the same platter twice. The views are beautiful with a clear cut view of the sea and sky which is just beautiful as the sun begins to set. The restaurant is decorated beautifully with a clean blue and white interior and the staff are very friendly. Could not recommend this restaurant enough!

    Reply
    • Thank you for the tip India, I’ve added it to my “to test” list. 😉

      Reply
  3. Hi Edward,
    At first thanks for the great information you provide on your blog they have been very helpful throughout our 1 week visit to Malta!
    There is definitely one restaurant missing in your list: Bouquet Garni in Mellieħa.
    We lived nearby and went in cause of the excellent Tripadvisor comments. It is a small family run restaurant with great passionate service and outstanding food (especially the grilled octopus)
    BR Patrick

    Reply
    • Thank you for chipping in that suggestion Patrick, I’ve added it to my list to try!

      Reply
  4. Hi Edward,

    I’m visiting Mellieha with my partner from 16th to 19th June. Any great authentic dinner recommendations for our final night? Something with great views and traditional food (seafood?) Would also appreciate other lunch/dinner recommendations in the same area. We probably won’t be renting a car so something in the area would be great..

    Thanks,

    Ash.

    Reply
    • Hi Ash, the two restaurants I can think of are the Hilltop, located in the main road of Mellieha and Munchies, at Mellieha Bay. The first for the traditional food (although not a wide selection), the second for the view (AND the food, even if it’s not necessarily traditional Maltese food).

      Reply
  5. Hi Edward,
    Great tips. Do you know of any restaurants in the Mellieħa / St Pauls area that are suitable for vegetarians?
    Thanks

    Reply
    • Hi Georgina, the only restaurants that come to mind in those areas (that serve at least a few dishes specifically for vegetarians) are:
      * Mezzaluna Bistro & Pizzeria (St. Paul’s Bay)
      * House of Spice (Indian – Buġibba)
      * One80 Kitchen & Lounge (Mellieħa)

      If you’ll be renting a car I can also recommend Agliolio who have a decent choice of vegetarian dishes. They’re part of the Radisson Golden Sands at Golden Bay, which is a 10-15 min drive away from St. Paul’s Bay.

      Reply
  6. As a solo vegetarian traveller, are there any restaurants you would recommend in particular?

    Reply
    • Hi Niki, if location isn’t an issue, these are the places that are most vegetarian-friendly (that I know of):
      * The Grassy Hopper (Valletta, Gżira)
      * Pure (Sliema)
      * Mint (Sliema)
      * Tate (Birgu)

      Reply
  7. Went with four friends to Tal-Majjistra in Mġarr. The rabbit dish was excellent. The whole evening was excellent actually, the food was really good, the service was great and the food was served with a smile. All in all quite recommendable.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the tip Josef. They do know how to prepare a tasty rabbit dish in Mġarr!

      Reply
  8. Hi, I want to celebrate my wife’s 50th birthday with 4 others. Do you have any suggestions?
    We are foodie people staying Cirkewwa and need it to be special.

    Reply
    • Hi Brian, I would suggest either heading down to Mellieħa Bay for a place called Munchies (I assure you that it’s much better food than you’d expect from a place bearing that name) or head to Mellieħa centre, for Rebekah’s.

      Reply
  9. This was awesome. My husband and I will be going in June for 5 nights. What would be your absolute top 5 for us to experience? We will be staying in St Julian’s area. But I don’t care-happy to rent a car or taxi.

    Reply
    • Hi Sudi, that’s a very good question and one to which I’ll probably have a slightly different answer for every month. In no particular order, I’d say these are my current top 5:
      * La Vecchia Napoli (Sliema or Salini Resort at Salina/Qawra)
      * Legligin (Valletta)
      * Rebekah’s (Mellieħa)
      * Tartarun (Marsaxlokk)
      * Munchies (Mellieħa Bay)

      Reply
  10. Hi Edward, thanks for all the tips. Been to malta a couple of times but do you know of any authentic Maltese restaurants in Bugibba? Thank you and keep up the good work!

    Reply
    • Hi Paul, Charlie’s Inn gets good reviews, particularly because of their traditional Maltese rabbit dishes. They’re located just outside of Buġibba/Qawra in a small locality on the coastline, called Salina.

      Reply
  11. Thank you so much for sharing this experience! We tried Ta ‘ Cassia in Salina and it was very good. Still in Malta so will try others as well.

    Reply
    • Glad you like that recommendation and hope you enjoyed your trip Gunnar!

      Reply
  12. Sepia in Marsascala near playground…absolutely great food.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the tip Carmen!

      Reply

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