9 Mediterranean Spots to Wine and Dine

Escape to these wine-centric restaurants in coastal Croatia, France, Greece, Italy and beyond

9 Mediterranean Spots to Wine and Dine
True to its name, Croatia's Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik offers gorgeous seaside views from all angles, in addition to great food and wine. (Courtesy of Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik)
Apr 14, 2023

With summer approaching, the weather is calling for a break from the ordinary. There’s no better getaway than a seaside vacation, especially one centered on the Mediterranean coast. Each Mediterranean destination offers its own unique character and culinary identity, creating wine-and-food experiences that are truly memorable. From Greece to Italy to Croatia, these nine Wine Spectator Restaurant Award winners serve superior wine lists in pristine settings.

To check out more great wine-and-dining spots across the globe, explore the many other Wine Spectator Restaurant Award–winning destinations, including our Grand Award recipients.

Do you have a favorite place you’d like to see on this list? Send your recommendations to restaurantawards@mshanken.com. We want to hear from you!

Note: Opening hours and menus are subject to change as the industry continues to adjust to evolving regulations..

Il Poeta Contadino

Via Indipendenza 27, Alberobello, Italy
Telephone (39) 0-80-432-1917
Website www.ilpoetacontadino.it
Grand Award

 Tables set in the dining room of Il Poeta Contadino, with stone walls, floral-decorated chairs and a stained glass window depicting roses
There’s tons of local charm to the food, wines and atmosphere of Il Poeta Contadino. (Courtesy of Il Poeta Contadino)

A longtime leader in fine dining and wine, the Marco family’s Il Poeta Contadino, in the Adriatic hamlet of Alberobello, has been a Grand Award winner since 1997. Chef-owner Leonardo Marco has long been at the helm of this culinary destination, treating seasonal ingredients simply but skillfully for his traditional Italian menu. Antipasti options include crispy prawns with yellow pepper cream and eggplant rolls with monkfish. There are also plenty of pastas as well as larger plates, such as red mullet with mint vinaigrette and a beef filet with olive cream. Italy dominates wine director Cosmo Marco’s list of more than 2,500 selections, housed across three cellars, with bottles from leading estates across the country. The wine program also excels in Bordeaux. With its rustic stone design, Il Poeta Contadino’s dining room celebrates the historic limestone huts (trulli) of Alberobello, which have been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Le Louis XV - Alain Ducasse

Hôtel de Paris, Place du Casino, Monte Carlo, Monaco
Telephone (377) 98-06-88-64
Website www.ducasse-paris.com
Grand Award

 The rococo-style dining room of Le Louis XV - Alain Ducasse, with gold-colored chairs, gold crown molding and a ring of lights hanging above
Well-known chef Alain Ducasse opened Le Louis XV in 1987. (Pierre Monetta)

Holding a Grand Award since 1995, Le Louis XV - Alain Ducasse is a shining star in Monte Carlo’s fine dining scene. Located in the Hôtel de Paris, with gorgeous views of the Mediterranean, the restaurant’s gilded dining room exudes luxury (in an already luxurious city) and its terrace overlooks the famed Place du Casino. Chef Emmanuel Pilon offers a menu of Mediterranean dishes, available both à la carte and through a tasting menu, joined by bottles from wine director Gérard Margeon’s 1,000-selection list. The wine program is drawn from a massive, rock-carved cellar of 250,000 bottles. France is the star here, with wines from leading names in Bordeaux, Burgundy, the Rhône and Provence. Guests can look to acclaimed bottles from Italy’s Piedmont region, too.

Alfred Keller

Boutique Hotel Alhambra, Čikat ul. 16, Mali Lošinj, Croatia
Telephone (385) 51-260-700
Website www.losinj-hotels.com/en/dining/restaurant-alfred-keller
Best of Award of Excellence

 The dining room at Alfred Keller, with blue and brown leather seats, floor-to-ceiling windows and sheer curtains
Croatian and French culinary traditions mingle at Alfred Keller. (Courtesy of Alfred Keller)

Located on the Croatian island of Mali Lošinj, Alfred Keller is the star restaurant at the Boutique Hotel Alhambra. Here, diners delight in chef Michael Gollenz’s Stargazing Experience tasting menu of Croatian and French cuisine, served in a light and airy space that spills out onto a terrace with stunning views of Čikat Bay. Complementing Gollenz’s menu are 610 wines on the Best of Award of Excellence–winning list overseen by head sommelier Filip Veselovac. Croatian selections form the core, joined by bottles from France (especially Bordeaux), Italy and Germany. Champagne particularly shines, with gems such as the Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé Champagne Elisabeth Salmon 2008 and the Moët & Chandon Brut Champagne Dom Pérignon Plénitude P2 1998.

Due Cigni Il Ristorante

Viale Europa 71, Montecosaro Scalo, Italy
Telephone (39) 0-73-386-5182
Website www.duecigniristorante.com
Best of Award of Excellence

 An exterior shot of people dining at Due Cigni Il Ristorante, with floor-to-ceiling windows and a white, modern-design interior
Due Cigni Il Ristorante is a lively spot for exploring regional cuisine and wines from Italy, France and farther abroad. (Courtesy of Due Cigni Il Ristorante)

Due Cigni Il Ristorante offers a contemporary atmosphere in the ancient seaside town of Montecosaro Scalo in Italy’s Marche region, inviting guests to enjoy colorful, regional cuisine in a sleek, minimalistic space. With more than 1,000 selections on the wine list, curated by wine director Silver Frati, it’s also a destination for great Italian bottles, especially those from Piedmont and Tuscany, and standout Burgundies. Chefs and owners Rosaria and Sandro Morganti serve vegetable-focused dishes, which are also available across several tasting menus.

GB Roof Garden Restaurant

Hotel Grande Bretagne, Vas. Georgiou A1, Athens, Greece
Telephone (30) 210-3330-766
Website www.gbroofgarden.gr
Best of Award of Excellence

 Tables set on the veranda of the GB Roof Garden Restaurant at night, with a view of the ancient Acropolis landmark
Take in views of historic sites while enjoying Mediterranean cuisine at this Athens mainstay. (Courtesy of GB Roof Garden)

Looking out on to Athens’ Parthenon, Mount Lycabettus and Old Royal Palace (home to the Hellenic Parliament) in one vista, GB Roof Garden Restaurant is a Greek wine-and-travel destination you have to see to believe. A Best of Award of Excellence winner since 2014, the rooftop restaurant is housed at the Hotel Grande Bretagne and serves Mediterranean staples, such as grilled calamari, roasted lamb shoulder and pumpkin risotto with Ladotyri (a cheese from the island of Zakynthos that’s preserved in olive oil). Wine director Evangelos Psofidis centers his program primarily on the wines of Greece. Each of the country’s major winemaking regions has its own section on the list, from the Peloponnese to the island of Lemnos.

El Olivo Restaurante

Hotel Belmond La Residencia, Son Canals, Deia, Illes Balears, Mallorca, Spain
Telephone (34) 971-639011
Website www.belmond.com/la-residencia-mallorca
Best of Award of Excellence

 A set table on a veranda at El Olivo, with a view of hills and old stone buildings on a hillside
Both the dining room and the veranda at El Olivo offer stunning settings for enjoying the local bounty. (Courtesy of El Olivo Restaurante)

Located on Spain’s largest island, Mallorca, El Olivo Restaurante has a candlelit terrace that overlooks the Balearic Sea, creating an atmosphere that embodies coastal Mediterranean dining. Chef Pablo Aranda highlights regional ingredients and cuisine in multicourse tasting menus and à la carte offerings, such as olive-crusted racks of lamb and foie gras parfaits with red onion jam. Wine director Antoni Bujosa’s wine list offers considerable depth in Spain, with well-aged bottles from wineries such as Abadia Retuerta and Raimat, including vintages going back to the 1990s. While the Best of Award of Excellence–winning list excels in regional selections, it also offers plenty from France and Italy among its nearly 500 selections.

Le Cap

Le Grand Hôtel Du Cap Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel, 71 Blvd. du Général de Gaulle, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, France
Telephone (33) 4-93-76-50-50
Website www.fourseasons.com/capferrat
Best of Award of Excellence

 A set table on the terrace of Le Cap, with views of the Mediterranean
The many pleasures of traveling in southern France come together at Le Cap. (Courtesy of Le Cap)

Set among the red tile rooftops of Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Le Cap embodies the grandeur of the French Riviera. This Best of Award of Excellence winner is also dedicated to wine—a passion fostered by wine director Alessandro Nigro Imperiale and a savvy team of sommeliers. The list shows leading names from across France, particularly in Champagne and Burgundy, as well as depth in Italy, especially Tuscany. Housed in the Four Seasons’ Grand Hôtel Du Cap Ferrat, the restaurant features a luxe dining room and a garden terrace with views of the sea. From either spot, guests can order from Yoric Tieche’s menu of Provençal-Mediterranean cuisine. Tieche takes advantage of local ingredients, including those sourced from the hotel’s property, for dishes such as Mediterranean squid stuffed with blood sausage and wild turbot fish with hibiscus.

Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik

Sv. Dominika bB, Dubrovnik, Croatia
Telephone (385) 20-322-222
Website www.360dubrovnik.com
Best of Award of Excellence

 People dining at a table of various dishes, wine glasses and bottles at Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik
Regional wine and food are the stars at Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik. (Courtesy of Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik)

With tables set on the historic stone walls of Croatia’s St. John fortress (constructed in the 1600s), Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik has unprecedented views of the historic town below and the sprawling Adriatic Sea. Wine director Miho Vidak oversees the 530-selection wine program, which holds a Best of Award of Excellence. Croatian wine is the primary focus, but there are also impressive French picks, particularly from Bordeaux. Vidak and his five-person sommelier team use a Coravin preservation system, providing dozens of by-the-glass options for guests. Indeed, there’s no shortage of wine pairings for chef Marijo Curic’s Mediterranean cuisine, which is showcased through a tasting menu and à la carte options. Notable dishes include scallops tartare, stuffed and pan-fried calamari and pigeon with Jerusalem artichokes, confit shallots and caper sauce.


Akti Enoseos 3, Chania, Greece
Telephone (30) 2821-043700
Website www.salischania.com/
Best of Award of Excellence

 A dish of cured meat at Salis
Salis' guests are invited to indulge in a range of cured meats and cheeses. (Courtesy of Salis)

In the old harbor of Chania on the northern coast of Crete, Best of Award of Excellence winner Salis uses some of the Greek island’s best ingredients, pairing them with one of the strongest wine lists in the Aegean Sea. The restaurant grows its own produce for co-owner and chef Afshin Molavi’s menu of sleekly plated mezes and local delicacies, from hard-to-find cheeses to cured meats. For something more substantial, look to dishes such as cacio e pepe with dehydrated mushrooms or duck breast over a beetroot-dyed risotto. Also the wine director, Molavi curates a list of more than 1,100 selections, focusing on bottles from Greek producers, including Domaine Katsaros, Kir-Yianni and many more. The list pays close attention to France as well, with verticals from well-known wineries such as Champagne’s Charles Heidsieck.

Edited by Collin Dreizen, Emma Grant, Julia Larson and Megan Tkacy

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