From the Godfather of Modern Basque Cuisine


It seems only naturally for one of the world’s culinary meccas to be home to numerous Michelin stars and the world’s best restaurants.

San Sebastián is a must visit pilgrimage for all food lovers. Start with a pintxos crawl in the old town, Parte Vieja. And then go for the splurge.

Where to start? Perhaps with the godfather of all contemporary Spanish chefs, Juan Mari Arzak.


Juan Mari Arzak

Juan Mari adapted Basque cuisine into modern times with his creativity, innovation, and techno-cuisine. He has opened the doors and led the way for today’s most successful Spanish and international chefs.

Just outside the central parts of San Sebastián, Juan Mari’s grandparents built a house in 1897. They turned the house into a wine inn and tavern. Later, his parents converted the inn and tavern into a restaurant.

Today, Juan Mari and his daughter, Elena, have taken charge of the restaurant, Arzak. He oversees the kitchen, while Elena runs the daily operations.



Arzak presents Modern Basque cuisine with hints of traditional combined with the artistry of today and the future.

The restaurant has consistently earned three Michelin stars every year since 1989. It has also remained on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list since 2003.

The daily changing menu gains inspiration from morning market visits. The freshest and the most seasonal local ingredients shine together with the inspiration from around the world on a plate, or in some cases, a single bite.

It is the cuisine, the warm Spanish hospitality, and the overall experience from entering the door to leaving that earns the restaurant its well-deserved international acclaim.


Table setting and cutlery. Simple, classic, modern, refined – fitting in perfectly with the theme of the restaurant
Scorpion Fish Pudding with Kataifi. A crunchy light bite to start off the evening
Red Cod Fish. More bites of fish to warm up your palates and stomachs for the main event
White Tuna with Marinated Strawberries. The tuna is selected from the morning’s market visit. Light and bright with the sweet strawberry
Bitter Raspberry. Gazpacho-like with a jamón and melon cork
Chorizo with Tonic. Eaten in one bite to let the chorizo sphere explode in your mouth
Cromlech, Manioc, and Huitlacoche. Yuca root hydrated with corn smut (fungus grown on corn) stuffed with a preparation of onion, green tea, and foie gras. A textural, sweet, and savory play on your palate
Fluid “Talo”. Different interpretations of corn
In the form of a soup. An incredible corn soup experience, bursting with natural sweetness with a light creamy finish
Ovo-lacto. Egg with semi-crunchy shell and baobab accompanied by “lactic leaves” and curds
The beautifully orange, runny egg yolk
Fish Steak with Potatoes. Fillet of seabass lightly marinated with gin and served with several flavors of potatoes
Served over a tablet with a looping show of ocean waves – as though you are actually eating the meal in the fresh ocean water
White Tuna with Garlic Petals. The freshest tuna with a range of colors of garlic petals
Longan and Lamb. Lamb with different flavors and textures accompanied with fried grapes and longan
Super Truffle. Cocoa and sugar with chocolate and carob core
After the pour. The heat of the chocolate sauce melted down the truffle
Mikados. Sticks of chocolate
Black Apple. Sauteed apple finalized with the aspect of truffle and apricot
A picture of flowers. Dessert to be plated in front of you…
Golden Footprint and Ladybird. Caramelized fruits served with black sesame bread, pepper, and licorice ladybird filled with yogurt and olive oil cristal. It is a foot print in the garden of flowers and fruits!
Birthday Cake. For the special celebrant, the restaurant generously accommodated my request for a light something special
Ferretería Arzak. Arzak’s Hardware Store. Chocolates, truffles, and sweets in the shapes of nuts, bolts, keys, etc.


Click here for TripAdvisor reviews and photos of Arzak

Avenida Alcade Elósegui, 273
20015 Donostia-San Sebastian


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