At 10Best, we're always on the lookout for Bilbao's best restaurants, and while we appreciate places that have a broad culinary range, we can't help but adore restaurants that specialize in a given cuisine. When we're in the mood for Basque food in Bilbao, we head to Begoña Restaurant - a reader favorite - or we count on Casa Víctor Montés's solid track record and consistently great dishes. You'll find these places - and any of the restaurants on our list - to be fantastic options for Basque cuisine, and if you're looking to concentrate your efforts, start with the vibrant Airport - Bio area.

10 Begoña Restaurant
CASCO VIEJO. This restaurant is located in the shadow of Bilbao's Basílica de Begoña. The menu here includes such delights as smoked salmon and spider crab rolls, monkfish served with Dublin Bay prawn, and breast of duck served with natural foie. Reservations are suggested. METRO: Casco Viejo (94-412-7257)

9 Casa Víctor Montés
CASCO VIEJO. The first thing you'll probably notice upon entering Casa Víctor Montés is the interesting collection of empty bottles that decorate the shelves. The traditional Basque restaurant is a popular weekend dining destination for locals, many of whom privilege the restaurant's meat and fish dishes which are made from the finest ingredients. Live music is frequent. METRO: Casco Viejo (94-415-5603)

8 La Gabarra
DEUSTO. La Gabarra, a local roast-and-cider house, is located near the Guggenheim. The atmosphere and cuisine here is typical of the traditional Basque grill: casual, comfortable, and friendly. The restaurant's open kitchen adds a lot of character to the dining area, and the wood-grilled fish and beef offer savory aromas that are nearly impossible to resist. Le Gabarra is popular with locals, particularly Bilbao's business crowd. Reservations are strongly recommended. METRO: Deusto (94-447-7062)

7 El Perro Chico
SAN FRANCISCO. El Perro Chico is nestled in one of Bilbao's residential areas. The restaurant's interior is painted blue and accented by Spanish tiles, and the high ceilings and large windows give it a very open atmosphere. The dining area offers great views of the river and Casco Viejo. The house specialty is roast duck in orange sauce served with seasonal vegetables. For dessert, try one of the homemade chocolate dishes. The service here is friendly, and the menu is offered in English. METRO: Casco Viejo (94-415-0519)

6 Bermeo
INDAUTXU. If you are looking for a traditional Basque restaurant, try Bermeo. Located in the Hotel Ercilla, this restaurant specializes in fish and seafood dishes, including their famous cocochas. The wine list is better than average, and Bermeo is high on the lists of many locals. METRO: Indautxu (94-410-2000)

5 Euskalduna
INDAUTXU. This spacious restaurant can seat approximately 500 people. Euskalduna is decorated by several pictures dedicated to traditional Basque music, and it has a distinctly contemporary look. Most of the tables here offer excellent views of the nearby park and Guggenheim. The menu is distinctly Basque and includes all of the traditional favorites, including "pimientos rellenos de changurro." Reservations are suggested. METRO: Moyúa (94-421-3125)

4 Ibaigane
Located in the Gran Casino Nervión, Ibaigane serves a wide range of excellent Basque meals seven days a week until very late in the evening. The chef prepares the meals with the freshest regional fish, meat, and vegetables. The extensive wine list offers a vintage suitable for any entrée. Be sure to leave room for the homemade desserts. METRO: Abando (34-94-424-0007)

3 Mandoya
CASCO VIEJO. Located in the historic Old Quarter, Mandoya is a favorite of many of Bilbao's locals and frequent visitors. Mandoya offers a beautiful, yet comfortable dining area and a terrific Basque menu. Their specialties include "ensalada de langosta," lobster salad made with their home grown lobsters. Their grilled meats and cod are also popular. The service here is excellent, and the restaurant's atmosphere is fairly elegant. METRO: Casco Viejo (94-415-0228)

2 Víctor
CASCO VIEJO. A staple on the Bilbao restaurant scene for more than 60 years, Víctor offers some of the area's most popular traditional Basque dishes. Inside, you'll find a dining area that is subtly elegant, with traditional décor and furniture. The grilled meat and seafood dishes are particularly well done, and their dessert menu does not disappoint. METRO: Casco Viejo (94-415-1678)

1 Guria
INDAUTXU. Reportedly, the bacalao served here is among the best in Bilbao. The portions are huge, and Guria offers two dining options: the traditional dining area which offers a first-rate a la carte menu or a cafeteria-style dining room where the meals tend to be a little less pricey. Whatever you decide, rest assured that you will enjoy excellent Basque food in a comfortable environment. METRO: Moyúa (94-441-9013)

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Maps and Directions

Begoña Restaurant 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Casa Víctor Montés 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Dining Options: Live Music
Neighborhood: AIRPORT - BIO
La Gabarra 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
El Perro Chico 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Bermeo 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Seafood, Spanish
Euskalduna 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Neighborhood: AIRPORT - BIO
Ibaigane 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Neighborhood: AIRPORT - BIO
Mandoya 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Neighborhood: AIRPORT - BIO
Víctor 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
Neighborhood: AIRPORT - BIO
Guria 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Basque, European, Spanish
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