Also casual dining in biaritz/surrounding area would be awesome too!
There was a quaint and delicious cheese store in the old quarter of Bilbao.
So glad you enjoyed Bedua. While it doesn’t enjoy international recognition, it’s held very much in regard by Spaniards as being one of the Basque Country’s best asadors. And it boasts nice terrace dining in the summer months facing the river.
More casual dining between (not in) San Sebastián and Biarritz on the coastal route (not inland), two I posted about up thread:
BODEGAS HIRUZTA outside of Hondarribia, both for wonderful grilled meats and award winning txakolí. Female grill master here. They make one of my favorite txakolinas. It’s supervised by the chef of Alameda. This winery reintroduced txakolina to this area. Even if you don’t have time to dine, it’s worth the visit just to purchase one of their wines.
LAIA ERRETEGIA, another great, award winning grill house, up in the hills above Hondarribia. Very casual, as are most all Basque erretegia (grill houses).
GASTROTEKA DANONTZAT on a side street in the Old Quarter of Hondarribia. Just my very, very favorite place for a super casual meal with the owner, Gorka, who is absolutely charming. Don’t miss this one! Very creative, Have the cheese course. But reserve! It has a small outdoor terrace and inside several large communal tables. Great fun.
BRIKET’ BISTRO, the casual side of the gastronomic Briketenia, run by the Ibarboure father and son. Off the highway to the right, going north. Closed Mon/Tues.
GUETARIA, in the center of town, for its 27 euro lunch menu du marché. Open daily in high season, otherwise closed Tues/Wed. It has a pretty interior courtyard.
ZOKO MOKO, off the Place de la Republique, our “go to” after the Friday morning market for their lunch menu, menu du marché, priced at 25 euros. Unbeatable quality. Closed Sun/Mon
I haven’t yet been to XAYA but it also serves a well regarded lunch menu du marché.
A day spent food shopping in St-Jean-de-Luz (Tues/Fri/Sat in summer) is always a must for us.
Beñat, with its own shop, across from the covered market, has a wonderful selection of cheeses.
This town is a gourmet heaven, from macarons at Maison Adam to gâteau Basque at Pâtisserie Etchebaster to ice cream at Les Places Bargeton to charcuterie Fred & Maria inside the market to a dozen other food shops.
In neighboring Ciboure at Socoa beach:
ALAIA Closed Mon/Tues
If you can go just a bit inland, short detour, to Ahetze, I love the country house restaurant, LA FERME OSTALAPIA. Bourdain ate here in his Basque episode of Parts Unknown. Farm house chic. Lovely terrace dining.
You might want to look at this new article by Igor Cubillo (writer for the Guia Repsol) on 8 imposing Basque farmhouses where one can eat heavenly.
I’ve been to all except for La Revelía. My friend Mikel of Tours by Basques took us to Boroa, Andra Mari and Horma Ondo, where I met José Andrés. They’re all lovely and with beautiful mountain views.
I think will target this on the way up with a stop in st Jean de la luz.
Maybe briket on the way back to Bilbao.
Yes, please do stop at HIRUTZA in the countryside. It sits just beyond the Endanea garden center down a country road off the GI-636, about 5 km from the center of Hondarribia.
The txuleta at its ASADOR SUTAN is one of the best and the txakolina fantastic.
Speaking of places to stay east of Bilbao and within easy striking distance of Extebarri, my Madrid chef friend, when dining recently at Etxebarri, spent the night at OAR COTTAGE in Garai. He said it was quite nice, with beautiful views of Monte Amboto and delicious breakfasts.
I’ve booked for this fall. The tiny Mendi Gokoa in Axpe has been redone and is another option but because it’s the closest hotel to Etxebarri, it gets booked far in advance, in great demand.
Does anyone know if sare is worth a stop? Not just for culinary purposes but generally?
Yes, Sare is a highly picturesque Pays Basque village, as are Ainhoa & Espelette (the red pepper town). When we’re in the area we make a short driving loop of the 3.
The Hotel Arraya on Sare’s main square has a stand that sells delicious gateaux Basque. The hotel itself has terrace dining as well as the Hotel Lastiry directly across the street.
It was years ago now but we had lunch here in Sare and loved it. Recent reviews seem to show it’s still great.
Very picturesque setting and the food was delicious.
In the summer the farmhouse Olhabidea is only open for lunch on Sat-Sun. from noon to 2 pm.
The Hotel Arraya offers a special lunch menu on Wed, Fri. Sat.
Any recommendations for Biarritz itself?
Currently I have zou, Cheri bibi, club sandwich, and aite.
All gleaned from le fooding
The river dining was picturesque and the food was sensational! We honestly enjoy such local spots generally more than Michelin famed restaurants. I find the dining and the energy so much better. In my own city I like the non-micheleined restaurants generally way more than the one who have received accolades because of the crowds, price point, and the restaurants seemingly trying to cater to a specific criteria. We find the food and atmosphere much more to our liking. It’s just hard to find such recommendations when traveling so sometimes it’s just defaulting to what is prestigious. Thanks again for the rec!
For Biarritz, Chez Bibi and the rest that you’ve found on Le Fooding. It’s my 1# source for Biarritz dining.
One I haven’t tried but discovered in the Les Forchettes de Claire online guide is
CHEZ BB: BISTROQUET-BIARRITZ with an outdoor terrace with sea views on the Pl. Sainte-Eugénie
Since I haven’t tried it, don’t know if its chow worthy or not (maybe yes, maybe no), but some others in her guide, I have used and enjoyed.