Messina is owned and run by Argentinian Chef Mauricio Giovani and his wife Pia and has been wowing visitors and residents of Marbella for many years. It won its first Michelin star in 2016 for its innovative food which combines modern with traditional in a perfect blend of flavours, textures and aromas. They are passionate about using local produce, showing mastery of their ingredients with simple and elegant presentation. The food is international, with dishes from Spain, South America and Asia featuring on the menu.
Messina is located on the main road in Marbella and has a contemporary, bright dining room and attentive service, as you’d expect from a Michelin star restaurant. You can choose from the a la cart menu, but for the true Messina experience, the tasting menus are highly recommended. There are two taster menus, one smaller tasting menu for 62€ and the Messina taster menu is 72€ excluding wine. Courses are small, but exquisite, and wine pairing options are available and recommended for the quality and the quantity of the wines.
It is ranked 16th out of over 1,000 restaurants in Marbella on TripAdvisor and is praised for its creative cuisine and stunning flavours. Dishes change regularly but this summer they included sardines with lemon and cauliflower, spider crab two ways, pasta with aubergine and goat’s cheese, pigeon with roasted garlic and a foie gras sauce, and roasted ice cream with sponge and a sherry sabayon. This is a big hit with reviewers and the TripAdvisor comments include “Each dish was perfectly made, the service was excellent. The whole experience was exceptional!” and “Best food and best value in Marbella.”
Messina is the lowest priced Michelin starred restaurant on the Costa del Sol, with a tasting menu from 62€. It represents excellent value for money when you look at the quality of the ingredients, time and processes for each dish and the wonderful service. A la cart dishes start from 10€ for a starter, 25€ for a main and 9€ for a desert and although portions are small, the quality is excellent.
Insider tip – Try the roof terrace at the next door Amare Beach Hotel for a drink before or after your Messina experience.