An ever-popular choice close to Bol Harbor, the Konoba Mlin is just that – a mill tavern, set around what was a working operation a century or so ago. Given the sea-view setting, it’s quite wonderfully romantic, with plenty of outdoor seating encouraging you to take your time over your traditionally grilled fish or lamb. Don’t skimp on starters, either: octopus’ salads and Dalmatian prosciutto.
11 ante starčevića, Bol, Croatia
Call +385 21 635 376 for reservations.
The wonderful Palute sits on Supetar Harbor, and its extensive terrace is pretty much the first thing you see when you step off the boat from Split. For waterside location, quality of food, fish and meat prepared on a traditional grill, and superb service, they could charge a fortune – but they don’t. Many opt for the seafood platter, either for one or for two, with a carafe of house white to accompany.
16 put pasike, Supetar, Croatia
Call +385 21 631 730 for reservations.
Set in a historic 1900s villa tucked away in the winding backstreets of Split’s Old Town, Perivoj welcomes patrons into its art-deco surroundings where award-winning chefs serve up a menu of typically Croatian dishes. However, it is the selection of desserts and cakes that really make this joint a treat – in particular, you can’t go wrong with the Slatko o’ medulla, a to-die-for almond and citrus cake. Occupy a seat in one of the city’s oldest pleasure gardens and satisfy your sweet tooth by one of the tranquil fountains.
Perivoj, Slavićeva ul. 44, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 21 785 875 for reservations.
For the last holiday blow-out, you could do far worse than the Ribarska kućica, ‘a restaurant for fishermen and gourmets’ as its blurb says. Set in a stone house where fishermen stored their nets and salted their catch, this revered little spot is balanced at the end of a stone path atop a secluded beach and miles of sea. If you need a place on Brač to propose in, this would be it. Like the previous occupants, they know very well what to do with fish here, matching monkfish with smoked prosciutto, and serving exquisite lobster, for which you should bring a thick wad of kunas as well as that engagement ring.
Ante Starčevića, Bol, Croatia
Call +385 21 635 033 for reservations.
There’s something a bit different about the Taverna Riva, something that makes it worth visiting above and beyond the surroundings, a sturdy stone house and terrace overlooking the Adriatic in Bol. If you’re staying longer than three days on Brač, you’ll appreciate a menu that veers away from the standard 10 dishes you’ll see everywhere, to offer the likes of pumpkin gnocchi with four-cheese sauce and spit-roasted lamb offal, vitalac. Lamb, veal and octopus are prepared ‘under the bell’, as they say in Dalmatia, which means slow-roasted in hot coals.
5 frane radića, Bol, Croatia
Call +385 21 635 236 for reservations.
Prepare to walk up several flights of stairs through the Old Town to reach the palazzo where Apetit is situated within the walls of a 15th-century Papalićeva palace. Thankfully the effort will pay off once you take a glance at the menu of Dalmatian meat and fish dishes, all prepared to the highest quality with an eclectic twist of creativity. Exceptional gastronomy has been served on this spot for the past 700 years and these days, the restaurant continues to be devoted to culinary excellence. Opt for dishes such as octopus’ carpaccio, beef fillets in Istrian truffle sauce, zucchini risotto or the selection of freshly caught fish – the fish platter for two is a stellar choice if you’re eager to sample the fruits of the sea. If nothing else, simply pop by to have a peek at the interior of the restaurant which is adorned with beautiful, medieval stonework and an array of stunning oil paintings.
Apetit, Ul. Pavla Šubića 5, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 21 332 549 for reservations.
For those nearing the end of their budget, but who still want to experience the best of Croatian cuisine, Buffet Fife is the place to go. Located in the upcoming Veli Varos neighborhood, historically known for its fishermen, this Split institution offers a true local experience of indifferent service, loud kitchen staff, crowded table sharing and, of course, cheap wine. There are daily specials on offer here, anything ranging from chicken hot pot or black cuttlefish risotto to fried sardines and lamb meatballs with boiled potatoes. Whatever you choose, everything is delicious and sourced from the freshest ingredients.
Buffet Fife, Trumbićeva obala 11, 21000, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 21 345 223 for reservations.
Konoba Matejuska can be found occupying the ground of an old Dalmatian house that was built in the 19th century. Exuding a rustic ambience, the cozy, family-run restaurant specializes in top-notch seafood at no-fuss prices by the weight. Come early or reserve as there are only five or six tables squeezed into the below street-level dining room. The black risotto is a specialty here so consider your options carefully when confronted by the delicious menu of local dishes and refreshing wines.
Konoba Matejuska, Ul. Tomića stine 3, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 98 222 822 for reservations.
Konoba Varoš has been a long-standing favorite among locals for decades who flock to this unpretentious restaurant to dine on its specialty – fried calamari served with garlic mayonnaise. Alongside this, patrons come to enjoy a variety of cold and hot dishes, many of which are prepared to fit along with the Dalmatian tradition of cooking under a baking lid. Alternatively, play it safe with local options such as black risotto, shrimp tagliatelle and fish choices of gilthead bream, sea bass, monkfish and tuna. Just don’t forget the wine.
Konoba Varoš, Ul. ban Mladenova 7, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 21 396 138 for reservations.
Out of many, Pizzeria Galija is probably one of the best in Split, made obvious by the number of locals who frequent this joint on a regular basis. Located right in the center of town, this pizza institution welcomes guests into its 1980s-style interior, comprising dark wooden seating and porcelain tile artwork. Alternatively, pick a spot on one of the benches outside to get your fill of open wood-fired pizzas in the fresh air. Considering the portion-sizes and the exceptional tastes, this no-frills joint will be worth every single one of your pennies.
Pizzeria Galija, Tončićeva ul. 12, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 21 347 932 for reservations.
Uje Oil Bar is an elegant tapas-style restaurant situated right in the heart of Split, opened a few years ago by local olive oil retailers and delicatessen specialists. With a passionate focus on the very best of Mediterranean cuisine, a meal in the restaurant’s friendly farmhouse kitchen is the perfect companion to any Croatian dining experience. The menu changes according to what is seasonally available. However, you can always dunk your crispy hunks of bread into aromatic olive oils, as well as sample local soups, cold cuts, marinated fish and filling pulse dishes.
Uje Oil Bar, Dominisova ul. 3, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 95 200 8008 for reservations.
Adorned with bright floor-to-ceiling windows and exposed brick walls, Zinfadel Food & Wine is a contemporary joint in the city center. Pair your choice of more than 100 bottled Croatian and international wines with a large selection of tapas and cold platters. All ingredients are locally sourced and ever-changing, making for an exceptional Dalmatian culinary experience with each visit. Venture by for lunch to sample dishes such as roasted Adriatic octopus’ salad, oxtail ravioli or ricotta-stuffed calamari, or reserve a table for the evening for options such as braised veal tongue, saffron risotto and file mignon with sweet potato. For those looking for a full Dalmatian experience, the five-course tasting menu will do the trick.
Zinfadel Food & Wine, Ul. Marka Marulića 2, Split, Croatia,
Call +385 21 355 135 for reservations.
Open since 2002, Levanat has been steadily building up a regular clientele, and has received rave reviews from tourists and locals alike. As the venue is located on the Lapad peninsula, dining at Levanat can be a sunny, breezy beachside experience, full of the joys of a holiday in the Mediterranean. The menu consists of refined Dalmatian dishes and local Dubrovnik cuisine and customs, excitingly combined. As well as supplying a number of fresh seafood dishes, diners will be tempted by cheese and honey combinations, exotic meat dishes and delicious desserts. Slightly off the beaten track, this restaurant offers stunning views of the Bay of Lapad and the islets Grebeni and Sv. Adrijia.
Levanat, Nika i Meda Pucića 15, Dubrovnik, Croatia,
Call +385 20 435 352 for reservations.
Nautika is a world-class restaurant which lives up to its fantastic reputation. Head Chef Mario Bunda’s dishes are carefully prepared with utmost attention. The seafood is so fresh it’s almost water-to-plate. Nautika is known for delivering high standards of service, VIP guests include Pope John II and members of the Japanese and Norwegian royal families. Diners can sample pureed fish ice cream cones on terraces at the edge of the Adriatic Sea.
Nautika, Brsalje 3, Pile, Dubrovnik, Croatia,
Call +385 20 442 526 for reservations.
This delectable oyster-sushi bar caters to the increasing public demand for sushi. Oyster & Sushi Bar Bota is located right in the heart of Dubrovnik’s Old Town, next to the cathedral. It offers delicious, fresh sushi and oysters at affordable prices. The interiors exude an East-meets-West character as European architecture and simple Japanese designs merge. This is the perfect venue to visit while exploring the ‘Pearl of the Adriatic’, be it for a snack, light lunch or evening meal.
Oyster & Sushi Bar Bota, Od Pustijerne b.b., Dubrovnik, Croatia,
Call +385 20 324 034 for reservations.
This historic and highly praised restaurant offers some of the finest seafood in the city. In business since 1886, Proto underwent renovation in 2002 to further enhance the dining experience. The restaurant started out serving fish specialties prepared according to old recipes, which were handed down by Dubrovnik fishermen. These secret dishes have remained intact to this day. Fine seafood and high-quality service define Proto. For those seeking alternatives to fish and meat, vegetarian options are also on offer, including the delicious vegetarian stuffed eggplants, baked and drizzled in melted cheese.
Proto, Siroka 1, Dubrovnik, Croatia,
Call +385 20 323 234 for reservations.
Located on one of Dubrovnik’s charming streets in the Old Town, this restaurant offers diners a degree of privacy and seclusion. Dalmatian elegance exudes from this restaurant and the menu effortlessly blends old and new styles of Mediterranean cuisine. Regarded as one of the top class restaurants in the city, Restaurant Dubrovnik allows diners to step back in time and enjoy their meals in medieval surroundings, see the tiny streets below from the pleasant rooftop terrace.
Restaurant Dubrovnik, Marojice Kaboge 5, Dubrovnik, Croatia,
Call +385 20 324 810 for reservations.
For those feeling adventurous, why not hop on a boat to escape the hustle and bustle of the city? Villa Ruža is waiting to serve diners on the island of Koločep, just west of Dubrovnik. Matching the stunning surroundings, the restaurant is a romantic spot, in fact it was built in 1930 as a symbol of love from a merchant to his wife. Rising out of the entrance of Donje Celo Bay, this restaurant offers delicious Mediterranean cuisine, courtesy of owner and Chef Ruđer Jelavić.
Villa Ruža, Donje čelo bb, Koločep, Dubrovnik, Croatia,
Call +385 98 443 382 for reservations