eto’s Pick: The Most Beautiful Restaurants in Europe
At eto, we believe in celebrating the art of eating and drinking. We know that great design can enrich everyday experiences - from savouring the perfect bottle of wine to sharing plates of food with loved ones. While we will always be fans of the rough and ready, strip-lit eateries of the world, we have to admit we go a little weak at the knees for beautiful interiors. There is something magical about the synergy of lighting, atmosphere and layout of a great restaurant, where the design of the space plays just as important a role as the food.
To launch our series celebrating the world's most beautiful restaurant designs, we've rounded up a little handful of our favourites in Europe. So if you find yourself in Paris or Barcelona any time soon, be sure to pay them a visit. Easier than a trip to museums, and so much more delicious...
La Buvette, Paris
There has been a new wave of contemporary restaurants flooding into Paris over the last decade or so, and La Buvette is our favourite of the bunch. This bar/eatery is run by Camille Fourmont and is open all day and late into the night serving hand-picked natural wines and seasonal French tapas. It oozes effortless Parisian style, complete with a monochrome marble exterior, mosaic-tiled floors, mismatched wooden furniture, and shelves of wine bottles. The wine offerings are chalked up on mirrors, and by night locals sip and snack in the glow of flickering candles. If there's one place that makes us want to move to Paris every time, it's this.
Everything at Kiln, from the soothing wood of the exterior to the polished silver bar, sets the scene perfectly for the celebration of rustic Thai food pouring out of its open kitchen, Bubbling clay pots and grilled seafood are cooked with fire and embers at this ever-buzzing Soho spot. There are a handful of seats wrapped around the bar, and that's where you'll want to stay glued for the entire evening. Kiln has a timeless feel to it, with its panelled wood walls, spare black and white photography on the walls, and a smattering of waving plants. The owners have created the perfect calm yet seductive backdrop to the open flames of the kitchen and excitable diners that fill every seat. Getting one can be tricky (they don't take reservations, of course), but trust us - it's all worth the wait.
Located in the buzzing Jewish Quarter of the city, this casual dining room epitomises Budapest's youthful spirit. Think hanging buddle lights, stripped-back concrete walls, sunny yellow touches, and plenty of lush greenery. Come for coffee and stay for Middle Eastern-inspired small plates and carefully-selected wines.
De Kas, Amsterdam
Vegetables play a starring role in the seasonal, sustainable dishes at this beloved restaurant. Their ethos is 'picked in the morning, served in the afternoon', and all this freshness is reflected in the design. Visitors dine inside two light-flooded glass conservatory buildings dating back to 1926, surrounded by manicured vegetable gardens. Inside, you'll find tables perched beneath the soaring ceilings, with industrial materials offset by gentle lighting and bunches of fresh flowers. By day, it is a suntrap. And by night, the warm glow of the room reflects on the water outside.
While feasting on pasta and wine all day is one of the joys of visiting Rome, it's nice to have an alternative from time to time. This probably explains the queue that runs along the wall outside Marigold, a restaurant and micro bakery in the Ostiense neighbouhood. Run by chef Domenico Cortese and baker Sofie Wochner, it serves fresh bread and pastries alongside a seasonal menu of colourful, creative breakfast and lunch dishes. The space is flooded with pristine natural light, with sliding doors, scrubby tiled floors, and a chandelier of foliage hanging above the main sharing table. It's a dose of aesthetic serenity in a city that often feels charmingly chaotic.
Berlin's Neukölln district may be known for its rough-around-the-edges style, but this fine dining restaurant offers something a little more refined. It's situated in a former schnapps factory, and the designers have embraced a post-industrial atmosphere by leaving much of the former shell untouched. The church-like ceilings are covered in original white and green tiles, while sunlight streams in through giant arched windows. Dark wooden tables and heavy ceiling pendants compliment the simplicity of the space, and there is a mezzanine level for observing the place from above.
Atelier September, Copenhagen
There are plenty of beautiful restaurants to choose from in Copenhagen, but this one really sums up the city's famous aesthetic to us. This breezy brunch spot is located in the former gallery. It is an easy place to while away a Saturday morning, complete with bar seating at the arched windows, grey stone floors and tiled glass ceilings. The pristine white walls and contemporary artworks are balanced by scuffed antique furniture to give the whole place the feel of being inside the homes of a good friend - a very stylish, very Danish one.
If you're planning to visit these restaurants, check out our article with tips on how to talk to your sommelier here.
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