Where to eat (and drink!) in Basel

When Julian and I moved to Basel, we found ourselves faced with a plethora of dining options. The only problem was, it was a bit of a struggle figuring out where to go. In Switzerland, eating out is outrageously expensive so we wanted to make sure that when we did eat out, it was worth the price. It took us several months to find those special places that we kept returning to time and time again. Now I want to pass our carefully curated list of where to eat and drink in Basel including our favorite coffee shops, restaurants, and bars to you!

Best Coffee Shops in Basel

Kaffe 1777– This cafe is tucked away in a beautiful cobblestoned courtyard right off of the city square. When the weather is nice, it’s the perfect place to work outdoors. They model themselves after the Viennese coffee houses and and make a killer cappuccino. Bonus: Kaffe 1777 is attached to a lovely library so if the weather turns or it gets too busy, you can easily take refuge there. Extra bonus: On many days, you’ll hear the sounds of a nearby orchestra practicing.

where to eat in basel kaffe 1777 basel

Mitte– Located in what was once the Swiss National Bank, Mitte is a spacious establishment where you can hang out, work, have lunch and get coffee. But don’t feel obligated to buy anything, Mitte is a nonprofit with a mission to support the local community and culture so they are happy for you to just enjoy the space. They take their coffee seriously and make one of the best cappuccinos I’ve ever had.

where to eat in basel mitte cafe

Where to Eat in Basel

Best Brunch in Basel

Les Garecons– It took us a while to find a good brunch place that didn’t break the bank. But once we tried Les Garecons we knew we’d discovered our new go-to brunch spot. Located in in the Badischer Bahnhoff railway station, they have everything you could want, from inventive egg dishes to waffles, meat and cheese plates, and fresh juices.

where to eat in basel les garecons restaurant

Zum Kuss When it’s too beautiful to be indoors, head to Zum Kuss. It’s located on a charming little park and you can sit outside and enjoy their mouth-watering cakes in the sunshine.  

where to eat in basel zum kuss

Best Lunch Spots in Basel

Kaffe 1777– In addition to being an ideal work spot, Kaffe 1777 is also one of my favorite places for lunch. Their build-your-own baguette and salad menus are full of yummy options. All of the ingredients are fresh and local and their bread is to die for. Don’t skip their iced tea!

where to eat in basel kaffe 1777

Kombüse– In the summer, Kombuse opens as part of the Mitte establishment (see photo above). They serve regional, seasonal and organic lunches such as paninis, pizza, salads and a special of the day. Sit outside and people watch as you enjoy your lunch. Get there early or you’ll miss out!

Piadina Stand– Every weekday Marktplatz (the city square) is transformed into a market full of fresh produce, flowers, meats and cheeses, and food stands. Piadina is one of these stands. They serve up their namesake, Piadina, a thin Italian flatbread with cheese, meat and vegetables. A prosciutto Piadina (my favorite) will run you about $15 but that’s about the cheapest lunch you’ll find in Basel.

where to eat in basel marktplatz piadina

The Piadina stand in Marktplatz

Zum Schmale Wurf– Go here to enjoy the view of the Rhine on a nice day. They serve delicious pastas and salads on a pleasant terrace.

where to eat in basel rhine bicycles

Noohn– If you’re craving Asian, Noohn is the place for you. Noohn is a swanky, beautifully designed space with a bar, lounge, sushi bar, restaurant garden, and a roof terrace. They have a large selection of Asian fusion dishes, from sushi to flavorful curries, and their portions are generous. It also makes for a quick lunch as you pick up your food as soon as it’s ready.

noohn restaurant where to eat in basel

Best Dinner Restaurants in Basel

Cheval Blanc– Dining at this three-Michelin-star restaurant in the Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois was such an incredible culinary experience, I wrote a whole post on it! Cheval Blanc is one of my all-time favorite restaurants but it should definitely be reserved for special occasions.

cheval blanc Les Trois Rois where to eat in basel

La Brasserie – Also located in Les Trois Rois, La Brasserie is a little more low-key than Cheval Blanc but still a fine dining experience. This romantic restaurant offers incredible dishes and a view of the Rhine at night. Their pork dish is simply sublime.

Les Trois Rois la brasserie where to eat in basel

Walliser Kanne Our local friend took us here promising the best Wiener Schnitzel in Switzerland and this traditional Swiss restaurant certainly delivered. FYI their Wiener Schnitzel is absolutely enormous so I’d recommend splitting with a friend.

walliser kanne wiener schnitzel where to eat in basel

Krafft Basel – On summer nights, Krafft is the most popular restaurant along the Rhine. With their perfectly cooked filets, flavorful pasta, and extensive wine list, it’s easy to see why. Their large terrace also offers fantastic people watching on the promenade and a breathtaking view of the river.

krafft restaurant where to eat in basel

Acqua– This trendy Italian restaurant in a renovated old water plant is the place to see and be seen in Basel. The rustic brick walls, opulent chandeliers, and slick modern furnitures create a posh and romantic space and the food does not disappoint.

acqua restaurant where to eat in basel

Bon Vivant – The concept of Bon Vivant is simple: a constantly changing daily menu prepared in an open kitchen using the region’s best seasonal ingredients. Take a date here or go with friends and sit back and relax. Word of advice: Go with the recommended wine pairings, you won’t regret it.

bon vivant restaurant where to eat in basel

Restaurant Schloss Bottmingen This restaurant is located in a completely intact 13th century castle just outside of Basel. It’s an intimate, upscale restaurant serving inspired French cuisine. Go here on a date because what’s more romantic than dining in a castle??

bottmingen castle switzerland where to eat in basel

Where to Drink in Basel

Best Bars in Basel

Werk 8– Located in an old machine factory, this hip restaurant and bar is a great place to bring a big group. The bartenders are true experts at their craft and they mix up the best cocktails in town. Go for sunset and climb the old factory stairs up, up, up for an awesome view of the city. The food is also really good.

werk 8 bar where to drink in basel

Sandoase– As a beach girl, I was a bit skeptical of a tropical beach bar in Basel but it totally works! At Sandoase, enjoy the chill vibes with a drink in your hand and your feet in the sand. You’ll immediately feel transported to the tropics.

sandoase where to drink in basel

Landestelle– This open-air restaurant and bar is Basel’s happening spot in the summer. Located in the industrial part of the city, it’s off of the main thoroughfare but well worth the trek. Food and beer are served in little wooden sheds by the river and the vibe is hip and relaxed. Get the regional plate full of fresh local veggies, hummus and meat to share with a friend and leave feeling happy and satisfied.

landestelle where to drink in basel

Buvettes along the Rhine The buvettes, or refreshment stalls, open up for the summer season to serve Baselers enjoying the Rhine. They always have a few local beers on tap and some serve bar food such as burgers and fries. A word of warning, the lines can get very long when the weather is nice so we soon learned to BYOB!

Flora Buvette where to drink in basel

Check out my top 10 things to do in Basel here!

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where to eat and drink in basel

where to eat and drink in basel

If you found this guide helpful or have something to add, I’d love to hear from you!

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19 Comments

  1. August 4, 2017 / 7:40 pm

    Ohh my gosh those waffles look amazing! *mouth drooling* I am planning a trip to Switzerland, not sure exactly where I’ll be going yet but I’ll have to keep this guide in mind if I ever end up in Basel

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 5, 2017 / 3:58 am

      Those waffles were my favorite!! When planning your trip to Switzerland I have a few more blog posts that may be of interest to you!

  2. August 4, 2017 / 7:18 pm

    These look like great places! What a beautiful place to be living. I’ve never been to Switzerland but I’ll have to add Basel to the list of places to check out when I go.

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 5, 2017 / 3:59 am

      Definitely do! Basel is sometimes overlooked but it is a beautiful city full of history, culture, and lots of great food!!

  3. August 4, 2017 / 9:38 am

    All of these places look amazing – those waffles look heavenly! I’m heading to Geneva next month so I’m hoping I can find some places just like this when I’m there. 🙂

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 4, 2017 / 3:01 pm

      Ah I’m so jealous! I didn’t get to Geneva when I was in Switzerland but it’s definitely on my list for next time! Enjoy!

  4. August 3, 2017 / 6:32 pm

    This is such a great, detailed guide! I am dying to get back to Switzerland (did the Berner Oberland last year), but I’d love to see Basel! Will definitely use this post to help plan my places to eat! Thank you!

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 3, 2017 / 7:13 pm

      Thanks Savannah, so glad you enjoyed it! There’s so much to see and do in Switzerland, it’s hard to do it all but definitely put Basel on your list for your next trip!

  5. August 3, 2017 / 5:30 pm

    Wow, what a seriously detailed list! I can only imagine how much time and energy you invested into this, and I’m sure it was a delicious adventure! I’m also from the coast (West), so I am also naturally skeptical about beach bars. I’m glad that Sandoase turned out to be a cool place. The same thing happened to me in Hamburg at Strand Pauli!

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 3, 2017 / 5:34 pm

      Haha I guess beach bars (regardless of the beach) are universal! Thanks for reading!

  6. August 3, 2017 / 5:23 pm

    Great post! I am from Seattle though no much of a coffee drinker. If you happen to stop by, stumptown roast is a popular local coffee I suggest you try 😉

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 3, 2017 / 5:33 pm

      Thanks for the suggestion! If I’m ever in Seattle I will definitely give it a try!

  7. Ben
    August 3, 2017 / 5:00 pm

    love it! ^_^

  8. August 2, 2017 / 7:11 pm

    Ooh I’ve heard Swiss coffee is pretty good! I’ll definitely be checking out Kaffe 1777 if I’m ever in Basel 🙂

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 2, 2017 / 7:50 pm

      It’s some of the best I’ve had! I could go for a cappuccino from Kaffe 1777 right now…

  9. August 2, 2017 / 6:30 pm

    Really informative. I am such a foodie! Will definitely be trying these hopefully soon!

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 2, 2017 / 7:49 pm

      Basel is a paradise for foodies! I hope you get there soon, I’m sure you’ll love it!!

  10. Albertina
    August 2, 2017 / 2:23 pm

    Very useful! Can’t wait to try all these places!

    • sarahdaisey
      Author
      August 2, 2017 / 7:48 pm

      So glad you found it useful!!

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