- El Merlo la Revuelvo (El Palo)
Ten minutes away from the city center of Malaga you’ll find yourself in El Palo (Traditional fish village), where you can find the best beaches out of the city center, and it is also where the best-grilled fish lunch places you can be found in Malaga. The area is crowded especially during the daytime since it is the go-to spot for locals to take a break and relax on the beach. Among the endless restaurants you’ll stumble across walking down the seaside promenade I personally recommend stopping at El Merlo la Revuelo.
The grill delivering smokey and fishy fragrance to all the people passing by already tells a lot about what kind of delicacy you’re going to taste once seated. Among the best choices definitely recommend espetos (small fried anchovies for just 2€) and calamares (grilled squid), with a nice glass of local wine on the side to heighten the taste.
- Las Merchanas
This extravagant place might hold you away at first sight but trust it serves probably the best tapas in the whole town. The place itself looks almost like a thrift shop with a dominant taste for religious “souvenirs” but the atmosphere is nothing but friendly and happily loud, it seems like you are at one of your friends’ family gatherings but in Spain. Regarding food, their croquetas de jamòn (ham croquettes) are definitely the best I have ever had, and I’ve tried lots of them (no seriously lots and lots!).
About the other ways, you can treat yourself while at Las Merchanas you can absolutely not miss the pulpo frito (fried octopus) and gambas pil pil (shrimps cooked in a screaming hot clay pot and seasoned with a spicy mix called perhaps pil-pil which is chili based).
- La Tranca
Now I want to tell you about the most vibing tapas bar in Malaga, La Tranca, located right at the edge of the old town is without any doubt the place where you can experience the Spanish culture regarding food and social life the most. This is exactly the place you need to go in the early evening to have a nice beer (or cana as locals say) and a wonderful tapa on the side: Highly recommended dishes you should try are Gilda(a very umami skewer composed of marinated anchovies, green olives, and onion) and Migas(stir-fried breadcrumbs with chorizo, tomato sauce, and spices).
- Casa Lola
Just 4 years ago there was just one in Malaga while today 4. Tapas here are very delicious, there are many tapas that you can’t find anywhere else but what makes this place unique are the 20 different pinchos with an incredible combination of tastes.
Casa Lola is a very typical tapas bar in the very old town of Malaga, the atmosphere is not as hectic as in the previously recommended spot but is also a very cheerful place and the food is obviously amazing. This colorful spot is home to the best patatas bravas in town and has a great variety of Spanish Jamòn (ham).
- Casa de la Guardia
Last but not least is Casa de la Guardia. This loud and crowded place is well known for serving a large variety of local wines especially known for their Vermouth (an aromatic sweet red wine) a very popular drink in Spain mainly in the south. The place is always packed and finds itself on the ground floor of a historic building. Right behind the counter, you can see the huge barrel where they store all the different wines which helps create a suggestive atmosphere. It is a unique experience tasting a glass of vermouth standing at the counter chatting and laughing with people while eating a tasty tapa (nothing cooked) on the side and feeling like life’s so easy and light.