The best cheap tapas in Malaga

I’ve been quite vocal in the past about how I’m not a massive fan of tapas. I never feel like you have a decent enough meal from it and always feel like I miss out on the good bit because everyone else dives in before me so I’s stuck with all the patatas bravas at the end of the night.

I’m pleased to say I had my head turned ever so slightly on our recent holiday to Malaga where we managed to find 3 really good quality tapas bars. How authentic they were I’m not sure but they certainly seemed to be full of locals and the prices were so reasonable it’s hard to believe they were anything but the real deal.

We were also really lucky to be staying up near the Castle in Malaga which also happened to be where the best tapas was (that we found anyway!) so, if you’re in the market for some cheap tapas, here’s where we found. It also heps that they’re all within 10 feet of each other:

La Tranca

This will come up time and time again when you google ‘best tapas in Malaga’ and it’s easy to see why. Despite it being a Monday night when we were there, it had a real Friday night after work vibe They don’t take bookings and you just have to queue outside to wait for space to become available. We were very lucky and got a set at the bar within 5 minutes of arriving. The menu is available via QR codes and we had a really nice array of stuff ranging from prawns in garlic, ham croquettes, tortilla and of course patatas bravas! For some reason, the croquettes seemed to be 3 times the price as everything else at 6 euro but everything else was between 2-3 euro each which meant enough food to keep us full plus a bottle of white wine (which they kept chilled for us) came to a very wallet friendly 36 euro.

Gloria Hoyos

I wasn’t over anamoured with this place when we first arrived as it was a little chilly and the menu didn’t look as extensive as La Tranca where we’d been the night before however I was quickly won over. We ordered the cheese board to share, some more patatas bravas (because every experiment needs a control) and some mixed meat pitta bread type things (which were more of a main course than tapas to be honest but they were nice all the same). The patatas bravas were a little better than at La Tranca if i’m honest, in both quality and quantity The fact they used normal and sweet potato was a good touch. The absolute star of the show though was the garlic manchego on the cheese board. I’d go so far as to say that was the food MVP of the whole holiday to be honest. It was so so good! So worth a visit simply to try that. Something else which would bring me back here was that the house white wine was only 8 euro a bottle so it was again a veritable feast for only about 28 euro in total.

Colmado 93

Directly opposite the road from La Tranca, this is an absolute gem of a place It only had about 6 tables so if you’re walking past and see a free spot, do grab it, you won’t be sorry! We were only here for nibbles before going for something a little more substantial that night but what we did have (again the cheese – forever chasing the garlic manchego now) and some pesto prawns with aioli. Again, prices were comparable with where we’re been the previous two nights at around 2-4 euro per dish. I wish we’d just stayed there all night to be honest as the pizza place we had out eye on for dinner was dead when we went there so ended up wandering round a bit aimlessly before settling on some very average squid. Don’t get me wrong, the food was lovely here (the prawns particularly) but it was the atmosphere I would go back for time and time again.

Perhaps all I ever needed to change my mind on tapas was to try some really good ones. And to think, people flock to Hard Rock Cafe when places like this exist.

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