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“Too Good For Words”
Review of Etxanobe

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Ranked #5 of 1,159 Restaurants in Bilbao
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$88 - US$106
Cuisines: Seafood, Spanish
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Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Breakfast, Lunch, Reservations
Description: Etxanobe restaurant is amazingly sited above Bilbao���s second iconic building, the gleaming Palacio Euskalduna. Etxanobe is one of the hottest dining spots in the world right now, drawing breathless reviews from food-writers and food-lovers for the grand cuisine of chef/owner Fernando Canales. The post-modern d��cor of the two dining rooms ��� one of them available for private hire ��� features a fabulous ruched fabric ceiling, wittily skirted lighting, white linens and seating, and unforgettable views over the estuary and the Guggenheim from the terrace. Light pours in everywhere. Innovation is on display in every mouthful that emerges from Canales��� kitchen. There���s no menu of the day; you choose a la carte or a series of tasters. Dishes change monthly and may include deceptively simple descriptions like starter of lasagne of anchovies, main course of sole with pil-pil sauce and trout eggs, and home made dessert of cinnamon and rice puff-pastry with milk, though you���d be mad to miss the little chocolate bombs. The wines are excellent and the service is a mission unto itself ��� in a word, sublime.
Reviewed 3 February 2014

The long tasting menu was amazing. The staff and the chef were amazing. Even the wine pairing was amazing.

I have eaten at many Michelin star restaurants all over Spain and have never received such personal service as this.

The food was great and so was the wine, but that's (generally) the case at any Michelin star restaurant. But here, what made it so different was the chef. He served many of the dishes himself, engaged us in conversation about his gastronomy and even gave me a signed recipe book.

If you can treat yourself while you are in Bilbao, Etxanobe is a great choice. I will definitely return.

Thank LisaMarieSykes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (1,400)
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244 - 248 of 1,401 reviews

Reviewed 13 December 2013

We arrived at the restaurant at 8.15pm which was half an hour early as we thought it would b really hard to find after a few of the reviews on here. We had no problem finding it but maybe we were lucky that we got the tram to the Euskalduna stop and crossed the road and saw the sign to the restaurant which led to a small lift, the restaurant was on the 3rd floor.

We were the 1st to arrive in the restaurant as as always on the continent eaveryone eats later and had a chice of a table inside or one of the terrace, as it was a nice evening we dined on the terrace. We were given th menu which was in English and Spainish and also on an I pad with pictures and a description of the cookings techniques involved in eaxh dish which which I have not seen before and was a great idea. While looking at the menus the chef/owner Fernando Canales came to our table to introduce himself and recommended som dishes. I can't imagine many Michellin starred cehfs in London doing this unless you was paying for it at the chefs table. we opted for the gastronomic menu which was 5 dishes of our choice, plus desert and coffee. You both have to have the same 5 dishes but can have a different desert each. A few people on here have mentioned that this menu was not explained to them but it was clearly on the menu at the bottom and there was a menu outside the restaurant before you came in.

Our five courses we chose were the anchovie lasagne on recommenaddtion of the chef (its his signature dish), a squid dish with onions, hake, venison

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 November 2013

There were a couple of pointlessly technical amuse bouches (tired effects with liquid nitrogen, 'liquid olives' to be piped into one's mouth), followed a disconcertingly plain dish of mushroom croquettes. Just five sorry looking, irregularly made croquettes lined up in your dish, no garnish whatsoever: a boring, repetitive and inelegant dish for a Michelin star level restaurant. A single langoustine in a mushroom cream was good (though the cream was in such large quantity compared to the lonely langoustine that the dish soon became again a little boring).

A cod was nicely cooked and of good quality, served in a pil pil sauce, accompanied by a razor clam whose sauce was also in the pil pil. The flavour was good though lacking power. The dish was a bit simple at this level. Same comments go for the final savoury course, a venison of good quality presented with no garnish in a not too intense sauce. The dessert was pleasant and forgettable.

The room is a bit dated but has nice views. Service was kind but sometimes embarrassingly unprofessional. Chef Fernando comes at your table and seems like a nice guy. Prices would be OK by Michelin star standards, but sadly for me this restaurant is well below that standard, hence I find the prices completely unjustified for what is offered. All in all I found the the cuisine here not unpleasant but utterly uninteresting.

1  Thank thoughtfuldiner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 November 2013

We had gone to this restaurant last year but apparently did not chose the right dishes. The menu lets you chose the dishes but the whole table has to have the same. But we fell in love with the restaurant itself and the service. This time we asked the chef to select the menu for us. He came to our table and told us his recommendations. They were outstanding. We also set outside in the terrace which made the meal more memorable. He also explained how he prepared some of the dishes and gave us a signed copy of his cookbook. It was among the best meals we had around Bilbao (just below the 3 star restaurants in St Sabastian).

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Thank Ataman A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 October 2013

A friend recommended this restaurant and our party of 5 was thrilled he did. The wine list was impressive - and two members of our party know their wine. We all ordered the gastro (5 course) menu and were blown away by every dish. While the decor inside appears surprisingly dated - we all agreed it looked like a wedding banquet hall - we sat outside on the terrace overlooking the river, the mountains and the Guggenheim; it was a spectacular view. The meal was surprisingly inexpensive for the dining experience one receives. I forward the recommendation.

Thank Xmtler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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