The bounty of fresh local ingredients, an emerging fine food scene on the coast and Spain’s rise to the top of world cuisine has led to a food renaissance in the Ronda area where traditional, local specialties and globally inspired tapas vie for attention

With restaurants on sun drenched squares, on leafy plazas, or perched on the edge of the gorge making the most of the views, there is something for everyone from simple, Spanish fare to glorious fine dining. Here is a tiny selection of what’s on offer.

De Locos Tapas

Right next to the Barrio San Francisco, just under the Puerta Almocábar and near the Iglesa del Espiritu Santo is this unassuming little restaurant whose modest appearance belies the incredible food coming from its tiny kitchen. Take a walk up on the old Almocabar wall before you have had too many glasses of the excellent wine owner Guillermo will undoubtedly supply. Lots of choice of globally inspired tapas, excellent value, one of our all time favourites.

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Almocabar

Named after the Almocabar (Al-maqabir) or former cemetery on which this fabulous restaurant sits, in a leafy square right next to the city wall with a great playground, Almocabar serves an array of beautifully presented, excellent dishes with some wonderfully balanced flavours. Summer brings the tables out under the stars in a corner of the lovely Plaza Ruedo Alameda, with its many bars and charming locals. Service is friendly and the clientele is mainly locals in the know. A good wine list and an excellent cellar, very highly recommended.

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Casa Ortega

On the corner of the square at Plaza del Socorro, this cafe restaurant serves great freshly pressed orange juice, good coffee, authentic jamon de bellota cut by a cortador and has a great wine list including local wines from, amongst others, F Schatz and Descalzos Viejos and a very pricey Pingus. Good for watching the world go by. From 8 pm. the rooftop terrace opens for drinks overlooking the square.

Tragatá

Sister establishment to the Michelin starred Bardal with a good wine list and inventive tapas. Take your time to people watch on this sunny side street in the Mercadillo, slowly working you way through the extensive menu. Excellent service.

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Bardal

There are 18 establishments boasting Michelin stars in Andalucia, this is Ronda’s. Fine dining in a beautifully designed restaurant right next to the bullring. Superb service, fabulous wine list and really fantastic food. Vegetarian tasting menu on request.

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El Muelle de Arriate

Situated in the old railway station at Arriate, just five minutes’ drive away, this restaurant serves up a delicious selection of salads, tapas, main courses and desserts. The Surtido de Postres Casero (selection of home made puddings) is truly memorable. A pretty terrace overlooking the valley towards the Sierra de Grazalema provides a great spot to watch the sunset with the occasional tiny train to add to the fun. Frank, the Dutch owner is a great host, calm, welcoming and with a very dry sense of humour. Booking is highly recommended.

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Molino del Santo

Hotel restaurant at Benoajan with a deservedly excellent reputation, chosen by Jamie Oliver when he was filming in Ronda. Lovely terrace and garden with weeping willows and views of the hills, the English owners certainly know how to make the best of the fabulous local ingredients. Guests of El Olivar get a 10% discount.

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Restaurante Panoramico

Incredible views of the bullring and the mountains of the Serranía from the terrace of this hotel restaurant makes the €10 for a `G&T well worth it. Food is more reasonably priced. Good service and views to die for.

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Hotel la Fuente de la Higuera

The restaurant belonging to this fabulous hotel serves excellent, imaginative cuisine with superb service and a wine menu packed with local gems. In summer dine on the beautiful terrace under the stars, in the colder months dine in the lovely conservatory and cosy dining room. Elegant but relaxed fine dining with a daily changing menu only 1km away and a romantic stroll back to the house.

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Bar Venta Pelistre

A mile or so down the road, this traditional bar-restaurant offers local cuisine in the campo style – home reared pork, rabbit cooked in garlic, excellent fish and beautiful grilled vegetables. Packed with locals, the bar is well stocked with a wide selection of local wines a good range of spirits and a fantastic gin selection - measures here are very generous.

Maruja Limon

This tapas and cocktail bar has the best views ever. An outdoor terrace overlooking the Serranía de Ronda in the shade of two enormous palms. Replete with enormous four poster day bed, a romantic Moorish oasis of in the heart of the old town. Only open from May 1st. Take time to enjoy this place.

Abades Ronda

With a stunning terrace overlooking the Serannía and glass walls to the interior, Abades Ronda is in the most enviable position. With a decent menu del dia or lighter lunches on the terrace. Excellent, friendly service and pretty good value for money. If you want to enjoy the views without breaking the bank Abades Ronda is a good choice.

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