Root 81 Wins Best Restaurant In Malta Award

The Definitive(ly) Good Guide to Restaurants held its annual awards ceremony on 5 December at The Xara Lodge, where Malta’s top 40 restaurants were announced 

Chef Parton Robert Cassar collecting his award for Best Restaurant in Malta
Chef Parton Robert Cassar collecting his award for Best Restaurant in Malta

The awards celebrated the outstanding achievement of Malta and Gozo’s top rated restaurants as voted in an online survey by 3557 diners who dined out on average one to two times a week; equivalent to a total of 277,446 dining experiences in a year.

Root 81, a lavish eatery in Saqajja, Rabat, was awarded the Top Overall Restaurant Award. 

The Top 40 Award winning restaurants were taken from the highest rated restaurants, taking into account their overall rating, the number of people rating, comments and other data from the survey. The top 40 restaurants winning award plates in order from most highly rated were:

  • Root 81
  • The Golden Fork
  • The Phoenix
  • Risette
  • The Aft Galley
  • Grotto Tavern
  • Al Sale
  • Ta’ Tona
  • Maggie’s
  • Rebekah’s
  • Susurrus
  • Da Luigi
  • Noni
  • L’Orangerie Bistro
  • Step 15
  • Beppe’s
  • Onda Blu
  • Venus
  • Barbajean
  • Ristorante La Vela
  • Galea’s Kitchen
  • Surf N Turf
  • Il-Hnejja
  • Tal-Familja
  • Under Grain
  • La Vida
  • Meraki Wine & Dine
  • de Mondion
  • MUŻA
  • Palazzo Preca
  • LOA
  • Fernando Gastrotheque
  • Ta’ Frenc
  • Tarragon
  • The Sixth Leaf
  • Il-Bitha
  • Ion at the Harbour
  • Bahia
  • Hammett’s Mestizo
  • Dinner in the Sky

Additional Awards in different categories were made:

  • Best Food – Venus
  • Best Ambience – LOA
  • Restaurant Most Dedicated to Supporting Local & Best Local Wine List  – de Mondion and Country Terrace respectively
  • Best Restaurant in Gozo – Al Sale
  • The Best Chef Award  – Jean Pierre Dingli of Barbajean
  • Best Business Entertainment  – Caviar & Bull
  • Best Newcomer  – The Aft Galley
  • Most Children-Friendly Restaurant – Don Royale
  • Best Maltese Restaurant  – Diar il-Bniet
  • Most Romantic Restaurant – Barbajean
  • Best Value for Money Restaurant – Il-Kartell
  • Best Vegetarian Restaurant (sponsored by FNG Supplies Co Ltd) –
  • Favourite Café  – Busy Bee

The Definitive(ly) Good Guide to Restaurants in association with Vini e Capricci by Abraham’s Wine Awards were as follows:

  • The People’s Choice Wine List (taken from the results of the surveys) – Barbajean .
  • Best Overall Wine List: Fernandos Gastrotheque
  • Best Presented Wine List: Barbajean
  • Best Wine by the glass selection: Hammett’s Mestizo.
  • Best Fine Wine List: Tarragon
  • Best Short Wine List: Barbajean
  • Best Port Wine List: Country Terrace

The results of the Restaurant Survey can be found in the 2023 edition of The Definitive(ly) Good Guide to Restaurants in Malta and Gozo, which is now available to purchase online for 8 Euros at It is also available at leading stationers and bookshops in Malta and Gozo.