Food & drink
These new eateries in Malta are our must-tries for 2019
So many fabulous new restaurants opened their doors in Malta in 2018… these are our favourites.

Jo Caruana

2018 was a good year for foodies in Malta. From local cuisine to delicious Asian street-food, we were spoilt for choice by the number of fantastic places that opened their doors. Now, we’ve whittled that list down and these are our favourites!

Hammett’s Macina, Senglea

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A haven for those looking for the finer things in life, this beautiful restaurant combines a stunning venue (in a structure built by the Knights of St John over half a millennium ago) and the talents of top local restaurateur Chris Hammett (as well as his award-winning team). Highlights include the beef fillet tartar to start with, followed by the sous vide rump of lamb and a side of truffled mashed potatoes – with crushed lemon pie for dessert. I highly recommend going all-out on the fabulous five-course tasting menu and perfectly-chosen wine pairings.

Carob Tree Food Court, St Julian’s

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If you hear ‘food court’ and think ‘low quality nosh’ you’re in for a wonderful surprise at the Carob Tree, where each outlet was hand-picked by the owners based on how tasty their existing Malta-based restaurant menus were. So, while the concept is laid-back and flexible, you know you’ll enjoy top-quality fare that can be mixed-and-matched, including Indian, Asian, sushi, pizza, pasta, fish and meat, washed down with cocktails, wine and coffees. Plus, with easy parking, it’s the ideal choice if you’ve hired a car and want somewhere stress-free on all accounts.

Nori & Taro at The Villa, St Julian’s

With gorgeous views from the terrace and a stunning setting indoors, this is our new choice for all-weather dining with oodles of personality. In fact, you’ll find plenty of different experiences within one concept here – from Asian street food to absolutely fabulous cocktails. And if you want to mix great food with a cool lounge concept and great music, head over for their trademark Villa Fridays or Villa Sundays.

Manouche, St Julian’s

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This time last year something was missing in Malta: a craft bakery with French-style treats so moreish we couldn’t bear to miss them. Thankfully, Manouche has since opened its doors to fill that hole and anyone with a love for pastries (and more) now flocks here. Personally, I struggle to get through a week without one of their pecan éclairs, but there’s so much more than that, including homemade chocolate, delicious hot drinks, and a whole other menu in their even-more-recently-opened Bistro next door.

N Japanese Bistro, Valletta

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Sushi is a truly popular dish in Malta but, until now, there weren’t that many options out there for more varied Japanese fare. This bistro – located on one of the trendiest parts of Strait Street – changed that, with its authentic menu of favourites (including their scrumptious potato croquettes), as well as Japanese whisky and gin. They serve fantastic sushi too, of course, but I highly recommend trying some of the other options on the menu – they promise a little piece of Kyoto magic served up right here in the Med.

IN.Fame, Valletta

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And now for something a little different, IN.Fame (a concept inspired by the character of the great painter Caravaggio) brings Brazilian flair and a South American twist to the capital. This is a super spot for everything from tapas and a cocktails to a full-blown meal, with highlights including the vegan tartar, the Picanha beef and Caldeirada risotto. Leave room for the aptly-named brownie soup… it’s unbelievably delish.

Noodle Box, Sliema

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Finally, for something quick, fresh, on-the-go and yummy, we’ve discovered Noodle Box – a concept which opened its doors a few weeks ago in Sliema. Pop in, choose your noodles, protein, veg, and a sauce, and watch it be cooked up before your very eyes. It’s definitely my new go-to when I want something fast and not-too-naughty, and the Asian flavours are divine.

11th January 2019


Jo  Caruana
Written by
Jo Caruana
Jo is a magazine editor and actress who is passionate about all things foodie and cultural on her island home. Her favourite pastimes include writing in cafes, performing at the Manoel Theatre, and exploring the countryside with her three beloved dogs.

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