Before I moved house a few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to live in the beautiful village of Qala (pronouce “ala”), situated on the east cost of Gozo, one of the maltese islands. This place is really appreciated by the locals, and by the tourists as well. Indeed, you can find in Qala one of the most beautiful beaches of Gozo, Hondoq ir-Rummien, which offers a breathtaking view over the whole maltese archipelago. There is also an amazing atmosphere in this village : the neighbourhood is (almost) always lively, and you can find there several restaurants, more or less likeable. To help you sort out the best from the bad, I prepared for you a ranking of the main establishments.
N°1 : THE TAD-DUTCH
Owned by two dutch sisters (one is the chef, the other the waitress), this restaurant is by far my favourite. I used to eat there several times a week, and even if I live a little further now, I intend to drive there on a regular basis. The dishes are original, copious and nicely presented, the meat is delicious, and the service is flawless. This is the most expensive restaurant of Qala, but the prices are reasonable and fully justified.
To start, I advise you to have the prawn croquettes or the beef carpaccio. For the main course, the meats are great, but don’t hesitate to ask for some “deep fried calamari” that are not on the menu. It might not be possible for the chef to cook them, but if you’re lucky enough to eat this dish, you won’t be disappointed… As a dessert, I always choose the profiteroles, my guilty pleasure.
Pjazza San Guzepp
Tel : +356 27 224 224 ; +356 79 227 770 ; +356 79 327 252
N°2 : THE D-BAR
This is the first restaurant that Gleb and I have tried the very first night we arrived in Gozo. And we haven’t been disappointed !
The dishes are excellent for a reasonable price. One small downside, however : the staff has changed a lot over these past 6 months, and I’ve noticed a lower quality of service. Errors in the orders are frequent, and the service is quite long most of the time. Too bad, because the D-Bar offers various and delicious dishes. Even if I have left this restaurant behind, it is still number 2 on my list.
I advise you to try the gnocchis, the rabbit or the spare ribs if you are hungry. The pizzas are also really nice.
St Joseph Square
Tel : +356 21 556 242 ; +356 79 427 014
N°3 : IL KAPUTA
An unpretentious restaurant, wether we’re talking about the food or the price. You won’t get served great cuisine there, but the meals proposed on the menu are really pleasant, though ! Several vegan dishes are also available. I especially advise you to try the pizzas, they are great. And the plus : their roof terrace which offers a pretty view over Qala and its gorgeous church.
Pjazza San Guzepp
Tel : +356 99 272 074
N°4 : HONDOQ BAY KIOSK
This is not really a restaurant, more of a snack : situated near Hondoq Bay (one of the most beautiful beaches of Gozo), you can come and eat a burger, a salad, a fish and chips, or even more elaborated dishes. Once again, an unpretentious spot, but the food is good, despite the service which takes a little too much time. But after all, you’re here to relax, aren’t you ?
I highly recommend the fish and chips. Their home made ice creams are also delicious. And don’t hesitate to ask for a fresh orange juice or a good smoothie !
N°5 : THE TA’ VESTRU
If I can say something about this place… don’t go eat there. Usually, I always find something positive to say about the restaurants where I eat, and I’m far from being difficult, but my experience in this establishment has been a disaster. After an hour wait, the waitress brought me a
hamburger thing that certainly came out of the frozen aisle of the closest supermarket. Still, I am being indulgent, because the frozen burgers I sometimes ate on these lazy sunday evenings were far better than that. I only took one bite of my meal, and I won’t even talk about the fries (frozen, too) that were far from being cooked. In short, I don’t think I’ll ever go back there again. And I was really disapointed, because that night, I was really hungry. Such a cruel world…
Pjazza San Guzepp
Tel : +356 21 559 090
→ If you go to Qala during the summer, I highly advise you to book a table in those restaurants. Also, in July and August, several religious feast happen everywhere on the island, and the restaurants can either be full or closed, so check beforehand if you don’t want to be disapointed.
→ I don’t know if this is the case for every maltese restaurant, but in Gozo, you can normaly ask to take away your meal if you don’t want to eat on the spot. Just have one drink (or two), and your diner will be served in a box. Perfect to eat at your place, or on the beach for a romantic evening !
→ Gozitan dishes are often copious… If you don’t manage to eat all of your plate, you can ask to take the leftovers home. Don’t worry, everyone does it here, and this is not considered impolite. After all, why leaving behind half of a meal you’ve paid for ?