Restaurants & Bars

Malta Trip Restaurant Notes

Belkisw | May 13, 201606:14 AM     1

I would start by saying Malta is not really a foodie heaven, but while there we did have some decent meals.

On our first night we went to Legligin in Valletta, based on many positive chowhound comments. The place is charming, as are the wait staff, and some of the dishes were yummy, but I would say overall it was not a fantastic meal, and they bring you far too much food (you can only get the set menu).

We had sushi at Zen Sushi in St. Julian’s, it is the only Japanese restaurant on the island that has a Japanese chef, and several other kitchen staff are Japanese as well. All we had were rolls, sushi and lots of sashimi, as well as two specials which were tuna belly tataki-type dishes. Everything was top-notch for sushi in Europe. The tuna belly was melt in your mouth, the salmon they fly in from Scandinavia and it was good quality, and then the fresh catches of the day were amazing- the seabream, seabass, red prawns, and squid. The chef made us several off-the-menu rolls once he realized we are serious sushi aficionados, and at that point the meal really took off. They also have a very good selection of Sakes (only three are on the menu, the rest you need to ask for and they present you all these hidden bottles that they have).

We had dinner at the famous De Mondion in the Mdina (a magical place for a midnight stroll after dinner)- I found the dining room to be rather grim and shabby, and the service to be underwhelming, with the wait staff not bothering to tell you about your dish when it arrives, and we had to wait about 1.5 hours for our food, while the tables around us ate their entire meal in the same amount of time. The food was ok. My partner had the scallops and lentils to start- not a great dish, nor one that made sense. I had prawn ravioli which was tastier and the piece of grouper that came with it was nicely cooked. For the mains, I had the fish of the day, which was rockfish and was nicely done and my partner had the beef, which was not particularly exciting. We had the poached pear dessert- a plate with lots of dots of mousses, sauces, ice cream, and not much sense behind all of it I felt.

We had lunch at the also very famous Ta’Frenc on the island of Gozo- a place that gives you the impression of faded glory. However, the food was good- we had salmon gravlax to start, which was delicious, though the pile of salad on the side of the plate was very dead. For my main, I had a seafood pasta that was perfect in every way. My partner had the fish of the day- grouper, it was chewy and dry, and what they called a risotto on the side but did not resemble risotto but instead stogy rice. For dessert we had a lovely, perfectly flavored panna cotta.

In Valletta, it is worth grabbing a Pastizzi at Sphinx, the dough is deliciously flaky.

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