Updated: Nov 10
One of Valencia’s oldest (and favourite) bars, Casa Montaña, welcomes guests with a charming art deco facade featuring twisting wrought iron bars and a heavy wooden door.
Founded in 1836, originally as a store selling everything from wine and vermouth from the barrel to fresh olive oil, over time, it became a bar as well.
Today, it is the perfect image of what a traditional tapas bar should be, from the bottles and barrels lining the walls to the friendly atmosphere and menu that pays homage to the best food from Valencia.
In charming El Cabanyal
This rustic bodega is set among the narrow, ceramic-tiled streets of El Cabanyal, just a few minutes walking from the sun-splashed Malvarrosa Beach and the vibrant port area.
Offering an authentic taste of local Valencia life, this once fishermen’s neighbourhood still maintains a welcoming neighbourly atmosphere. Once run-down and forgotten, the neighbourhood is fast becoming the trendiest in the city, with younger residents moving in and snapping up the colourful terraced houses that make it so unique.
A local cuisine
The tempting menu highlights the best food in Valencia, whether fresh offerings from the verdant Huerta Norte or the highest quality squid plucked from nearby Valencian waters.
The selections of tapas and tasting menus have a distinctly traditional feel, with the foods of Valencia’s forefathers refined for the modern taste. Think steaming patatas bravas, grilled red prawns, onion soup and Russian salad, sat beside squid in their ink, Zamora chorizo and pickled quail.
Explore a range of La Mancha cheese, a selection of cured meats and a variety of seafood guaranteed to delight. There’s even a small section of the menu specifically for small dishes to accompany your vermouth, including anchovies, olives, toasted almonds and altramuces (lupines), one of Valencia’s favourite nibbles.
An involved owner
Restaurant proprietor Emiliano Garcia does more than sit back and watch the business thrive; he plays an active part in continuing the historical work of his charming taverna. One particular tradition he seems distinctly fond of is the bi-monthly get-togethers that echo the days of the typical Spanish tertulias.
On these busy evenings, the interiors flood with Cabanyal locals and the occasional curious traveller for discussions of social interest ranging from universal justice to the future of the neighbourhood.
After a childhood among the vineyards of Requena, Garcia also brings wine to the forefront, with over 500 local and international wines served by the glass to allow a deeper wine-tasting experience. In fact, this family-run restaurant - Emiliano’s sister is also involved - even serves its own branded wine.
A welcoming environment
Casa Montaña offers a glimpse of the soul of Valencia, all dark woods, ageing barrels, traditional tiles and endless bottles lining the walls.
There are two distinctive areas, the entrance is the most picture-perfect, where you’ll perch at high tables surrounded by barrels to enjoy your meal. But pass by the wooden bar and you’ll head into the cosy back area, where tables are lower and black and white pictures line the walls.
The friendly staff want to make you feel at home and show you their part of the city’s many-layered story, and no matter any language barriers, they succeed every time.
It’s a popular spot, though, so remember to book in advance to avoid disappointment. And while earlier times see plenty of visitors dining at Casa Montaña, if you book a later dinner or lunch, you’ll be joining the locals.
Stroll along the palm-fringed promenade of the Malvarossa beach, step into the streets of El Cabanyal to explore mosaic-studded buildings, then, when hunger begins to bite, duck through the heavy wooden doors of Casa Montaña for an authentic Valencian experience.
Peruse the extensive vermouth and wine menu or ask your waiter for the favourite of the day, then start with some local lupines and a Gilda (1 fillet of anchovy, 1 pepper and two olives) to whet your appetite. Don’t miss the beans cooked with Iberian ham, it follows the same recipe since Casa Montaña first opened.
Your waiter will be happy to suggest some tapas to share, or you can dive right in with a healthy selection of Valencian oysters, black-label Iberian ham, goat’s cheese with black pepper honey and a colourful platter of grilled local vegeta.bles
Two centuries of history
To step into these ambient interiors is to pass through a time portal into the Valencia of yesteryear. Visit for a wine-tasting evening or an Iberian ham workshop, and you’ll enjoy a unique experience just minutes from the sun-kissed sands.
With almost two centuries of history as one of the neighbourhood’s favourite watering holes, Casa Montaña is the perfect place to end your day of exploration. It offers a tempting selection of food from Valencia and is one of the best restaurants in Valencia for those seeking an authentic experience near the beach.
If you’re planning a trip to Valencia, why not add this charming Taverna to your itinerary? Stay nearby at the Barracart Apartments to enjoy priority booking at this bodega and dive into the history of food in Valencia.
We invite you to read our Valencia city break guides and learn how to explore this unique region. From amazing short breaks to Valencia capital, magical days at Denia Beach, and unique experiences in the exuberant Albufera.