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$$$$$ | Italian

La Taverna

In 1979, La Taverna was the first Italian restaurant to be established in Bahrain and it is still serving up good, wholesome fare. This large restaurant is reminiscent of a country-style taverna with warm, gregarious staff serving customers in an ambient setting. A select menu offers vast quantities of authentic Italian cuisine, the best of which includes antipasto with tomato, mozzarella and avocado for starters, delicious pasta or pizza for mains and homemade sweets for dessert - the hot apple pie with ice cream is a must!

Address: City Centre Hotel, Souq
Telephone: +973 17 229 979

$$$$$ | Local

Golestan

Serving gorgeous mezze, kebabs and khoreshes (stews), Golestan is the place to go in Manama for authentic Arabic cuisine. For an entrée, try the Iranian herb quiche, or the lentil soup with potatoes, onions and leeks. There is also a good selection of Iranian caviares available. These can be followed by lamb braised with eggplant, tomatoes and yellow lentils, or perhaps the lime and saffron marinated, charcoal grilled lobster. Persian rice pudding and Iranian ice-cream with saffron and pistachio round things off nicely. Decorated in silver and turquoise, this eatery has a cool, modern feel to compliment its warm, traditional food.

Address: 6 Palace Avenue
Telephone: +973 17 533 533

$$$$$ | Seafood

Tamarind

On the slopes overlooking the west coast of Bahrain, Tamarind is an elegant restaurant in a very romantic setting. The décor features iwans (Persian hall architecture), timbers beams and cool slate, invoking a sense of calm. The cascading waterfall centrepiece is also beautiful. The menu has equally inviting options, featuring mussel 'shooters' in various sauces, Omani lobster served on ginger-infused asparagus, and fresh tiger prawns. For dessert, the pumpkin custard with berry compote is both unusual and scrumptious.

Address: Banyan Tree Desert Spa & Resort in Al Areen, 40 minutes from Manama
Telephone: +973 17 84 5000

American

Nino

Located in the Al-A'ali Shopping Complex in the Seef District, Nino is the place to go for an American-style dining experience in Manama. Known for great steaks, pasta, salads and especially its mini-burgers, Nino's generous portions are balanced by its minimal interior and the restaurant is always bustling.

Address: Al-A'ali Shopping Complex, Seef District

$$$$$ | Thai

Swan Lake

This famous Manama restaurant serves delicious Philippine delicacies like bulalo (beef soup), lechon kawali (fried pork) and fried cow liver. Located in the massive Manama Souk, Swan Lake makes a good respite on a busy day of shopping. The prices are reasonable and the portions are large, making it popular with both locals and tourists. The only problem can be finding it, as it is tucked away in an unobtrusive alley in the middle of the souk.

Telephone: +973 17 2 27 761

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