Cafe Malta

4.4
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1033 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Mediterranean
Cafe Malta is a neighborhood bistro serving Mediterranean-inspired fare. It combines a warm, relaxed atmosphere with a perpetually creative kitchen.

Named for the island at the crossroads of the Mediterranean, Cafe Malta finds inspiration in the cuisines of Italy, southern France, Morocco, Greece and Spain, and in the Mediterranean tradition, Cafe Malta cooks seasonally and features a variety of local ingredients.
What 1033 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
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ML
MaggieL
Austin
8 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were hoping for their Tuesday special Tour de Forks because this week they were featuring Catalonia Spain. Understandably, this is suspended until the pandemic has passed. We ordered off the regular menu and the food was awesome as always. We shared Trout Amandine, Coq au Vin, a pasta dish, pork shoulder and a beef salad. Everything was delicious and the 5 of us shared a flourless chocolate cake which satisfied the gluten free types in our group. I highly recommend Cafe Malta and can’t wait to get back there for the tour de forks.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
2 reviews
Dined on March 10, 2020
Overall5food3service5ambience4

Sometimes weeknight service here is a little hit or miss from the kitchen (slightly crunchy beans from the cassoulet, "rissoto" was not made with aborio rice, it was long grain, I think). But the service and experience of this restaurant more than make up for a few slips in the kitchen. Our server "jay-z" was an absolute gem and a model of good service. The drinks were fabulous and the appetizers on point! (Hello mussels and gnocchi! YUM!). Long story short, we will be back and we love this neighborhood gem!

LM
LaceyM
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I celebrated my birthday there and had an amazing experience. Ask for JZ!

SB
SeanB
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall1food1service4ambience4

The food took an hour to come out and tasted horrible. Our server admitted that the head chef of 6 years had quit the week before and they were actively training a new chef when we were there. I would wait a while to visit this restaurant to give them time to get back up to speed.

J
Judy
Austin
2 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We loved everything about this restaurant and will definitely be back!! We were especially glad to have reservations because the restaurant was full when we arrived.

RM
RossM
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall3food4service3ambience4

Cafe Malta has good quality food and the wait staff is very nice. That being said this is the second time in a row that my wife and I have eaten there, when the wait staff has forgot a portion of our order. I notice that they do not write down the order, only commit it to memory. Another issue was we had dinner reservations at 7 and they were already out if the special of the night (a little early). All in all the food is worth it.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
1 review
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

You need to order a starter or salad to go with the main entree in order to get a reasonable meal. I’m on a diet and always ignore appetizers because of their high calorie count. That much was my mistake.

I ordered the cassoulet and it was disappointing. The flavor was decent but nothing like a rich cassoulet should have been. It was meatless and I was wondering how they were going to have the richness of that dish without meat. The answer was that they didn’t. They should have called it something else, as the dish did not live up to the name. Mostly a half cup of white beans with some porcini mushrooms. The portion was far too small to be a meal.

Second time I’ve been to this restaurant and was somewhat disappointed.

I went home hungry and will probably not be back.

TB
TeresaB
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I have dined there twice. It is an hour , hour plus drive for us and worth every minute. The staff are knowledgeable, friendly,and attentive. The food is outstanding. we plan to work our way through the menu.

PH
PaulH
Austin
2 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always a great experience with incredible food

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
4 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food good wine nice ambiance until more people came in and the noise level was very high. It is one of our favorite places to go .

SC
vipStephenC
Austin
8 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience3

Food is good, not great. Service is great. It is ALWAYS hot in there, summer or winter. They need a new AC unit or something. Food is not overly priced though, so it is a good value from that standpoint.

JF
JudyF
Austin
1 review
Dined on February 18, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Love this place!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is my boyfriend’s and my new favorite date night spot now! We went this past Sunday night for a belated anniversary dinner, and it was spectacular! It’s smaller than the average restaurant but it has a cozy yet “fancy” feel to the interior. Parking was close and easy to find a spot. Every thing we ate was delicious, great selections for wine and cocktails too (I got a glass of Tiamo white wine and my boyfriend got the “Sir, May I Have Another?” cocktail) The place felt very nice and intimate and our server was so courteous even though the poor thing was probably exhausted after having to run around helping two large tables in addition to other small tables like ours! We ended up ordering two appetizers, two entrees, a dessert, and two macchiatos, and even after our wine and cocktail, the bill still came out to less than $80! So much more affordable but with food just as good (if not better) than most places where we’d easily pay $200 for the same thing. We are definitely returning and excited to try the brisket ravioli next time!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Austin
19 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I almost don’t want to brag about this place because it’s the hidden gem of south Austin. Everything was fantastic from being greeted at the door to our server not missing a beet. Food is amazing staff is so welcoming and awesome!

JA
JuliaA
Austin
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food2service3ambience4

In general, I really enjoy Café Malta. However, my most recent experience at their Valentine's Day prix fixe dinner was a little underwhelming. Tables were so close together that other diners regular chimed in on our conversations, many of the dishes were bland, and the wine, while good, didn't always pair well with the dishes. I would definitely recommend a trip to Café Malta any other day of the year, but I probably won't be going back for Valentine's Day

MD
vipMarilynD
Portland
2 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience3

My first visit to Cafe Malta. Loved the food! I ordered Winter Lasagna (delicious) and my niece ordered the stew (she loved it). We also ordered the hummus (very good and the pita bread was perfect). Service was excellent. We’ll absolutely be back!

LH
LeslieH
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on February 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Cafe Malta is top of my list best restaurant in South Austin. The menu is always different, eclectic, fresh tasting delicious food. I also love the vibe and the service is great too! If you haven’t tried it, Cafe Malta is a must!

MC
MistyC
Austin
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall3food3service1ambience4

I would recommend but with caution. We have been to Cafe Malta a number of times and had great service, never fast mind you, but European. They take their time, but not to an extreme. It took forever to get 3 cups of coffee and then another 20 minutes with reminding to get water. It was actually embarrassing as we had raved about he place and invited guests. We were there on a Sunday afternoon and the menu is very scaled back from we we are accustomed to at lunch and dinner regularly. Several of our party ordered the Pain Pardue (French Toast) with a strawberry compote and creme topping. I understand that this is what it comes with and that perhaps requesting maple syrup to accompany said dish was a big no no, but it's brunch...and it's French Toast. Syrup should be a staple. I had the Blue Cheese gnocchi and the butter leaf salad. It was delicious . Others had the Ragu pasta which name escapes me, and found it underwhelming. I wish I could say that we will be back, but I think we will try other places before taking a chance on the terrible service again. An hour to wait for a meal is a bit much, even when the company is fantastic.

MD
MandyD
Austin
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I love this restaurant for the wonderful ambience and delicious Italian food, but especially appreciated the fantastic service and dinner this weekend for my birthday. Cade Malta made it very special for me. Thank you!

RW
RobertW
Austin
7 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was delicious, and interestingly different, not just your conventional fare. The portions are just right, not gargantuan as in so many restaurants. The prices were very reasonable, too. Would definitely recommend getting a reservation, because the place is jammed. The only shortcoming was the noise level, which was very high.

BJ
BenjaminJ
1 review
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The cafe is basically a small, intimate space with a bar and tables spaced close together. The service was top-notch; it really could not have been better. The menu was innovative and tasty. As people filled the room, it definitely became louder, but not so loud that we couldn't hear each other. However, we were seated against the wall, so it might have been louder at one of the center tables. It's a great place for small groups of 4-6 to gather, not great for important conversation during the busiest hours (due to noise levels). Overall, an exceptionally positive experience!

TP
vipTallPhil
New York Area
60 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience5

I had the coco vin - perfect. Date had the trout and loved it. Has the feel of Europe....

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
5 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

JZ is our favorite waitress! The food is spectacular as well as the ambience!

BM
BarbaraM
Austin
1 review
Dined on January 23, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience4

I like the ambiance, and the staff are always friendly, efficient, helpful. The salad and appetizers are always good. My husband invariably likes the hanger steak main meal. I am often disappointed - most recently, by the pork ragu dish - little meat, and not much flavor. Our dessert (flourless chocolate cake) was dry and not very good.

We live south, which is why (other than the nice staff) we keep returning.

M
vipMarine782
Austin
201 reviews
Dined on January 21, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My wife and I enjoyed an excellent tour de forks meal from Barcelona. The dishes were well prepared and paired well with an Estrella Damm beer from Spain. We come here often during this great tour de forks experience.

A
Austinite
Austin
6 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2020
Overall5food3service5ambience5

I love the neighborhood bistro feel of this place. Food has always been interesting and well-prepared. This week we met friends from out of town there and three of us had the Trout Almondine. Perfect portion and excellent! My husband was very satisfied with his Salmon Salad. The daily dessert offering (a crepe with berry sauce) was not freshly made and wasn't at all what we expected. However, we have never been disappointed with Cafe Malta in the past. I look forward to the new dishes offered every time we feast there!

ET
EdwardT
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This place is always great. It was a little nosier than I would have liked, but it still delivers every time.

ML
MicheleL
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Never disappointed! One of my favorite local restaurants.

BT
BridgetteT
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Had the Mussels and they were delicious, ample portion and cooked perfectly. The only downside was they were a bit too salty. Otherwise, brilliant!

MN
ManchacaNative
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Our absolute favorite neighborhood restaurant. The freshness of the ingredients and the creativity of menus draws us back again and again.

DM
DougM
Austin
13 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Both the food and service were great! I look forward to returning for more meals.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

New Years Eve dinner. Though we were surprised by a pre-fixed 5 course menu, it was an great value & fun to experience something different & special. Service was excellent. We come from central Austin/Travis Heights to the burbs specifically because we love this restaurant.

BT
vipBillT
Miami
16 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2019
Overall3food3service2ambience3

We were excited about trying this restaurant as friends had recommended it. Turns out that the day we went, they only offered a brunch menu & not their entire menu. That was a shame but with such a limited menu, I would have thought the service would have been better. The restaurant had maybe four tables occupied and service was abysmal! Waiter forgot items on three different occasions. The food was mediocre at best. I won’t be back

MB
MBaileyLove
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My wife and I love our local bistro, Cafe Malta!
We regularly enjoy dinners there and often book through Open Table.
Their drinks are surprising and fun, the food is delicious, and the service is truly friendly and personal.
We highly recommend it!

TM
ThomasM
Austin
3 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We went to Cafe Malta for a birthday dinner. After some initial confusion about the items and cost (which wasn't posted) of the daily special on the chalkboard, we had to return the first plates served. The ladies serving us were gracious about the confusion and immediately gave us menus from which we selected salads and the flat iron steak and brisket ravioli (an inspired recipe!) for our dinners. The food was excellent and the service was superb. They even removed the cost of our two glasses of wine from the check to make up for the confusion at the beginning of the dinner. An unexpected and appreciated gesture of care for their guests. The ambiance of the bistro is sophisticated and unstuffy, and reminded us of similar dining venues in we have enjoyed in Europe.

For many years we have gone to another restaurant for our special occasions. While long on ambiance, it's over-priced food has become mediocre and the long drive north has always been burdensome.

With its convenient (to us) location, comfortable ambiance, impeccable service, and imaginative recipes wonderfully prepared and presented, we have found our new go-to restaurant for our special occasions.

We are pleased to extend our highest recommendation to Cafe Malta!

AT
vipATXCamper
Austin
7 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2019
Overall3food3service1ambience2

Wow, what a disappointment. We booked a reservation for 8 for a post-Christmas family get-together because we've always had good experiences at Cafe Malta. This evening was SUPER off, and not sure we'll be going back anytime soon.

1. The restaurant was about 10 degrees too warm. Our entire party noticed and was uncomfortable.
2. The service was inattentive and slow, despite the fact that we appeared to be her only table and the restaurant was not even 1/4 full.
3. A couple who were seated a good 10 minutes after our party got their entrees way before we did.
4. When our entrees DID arrive, only four of the eight orders came out, and then the other four didn't come out until 15 minutes later. The people in our party who'd gotten their meals first were ALREADY DONE EATING when the rest of the diners' orders arrived. Did the staff come over and say anything? No. I asked about it and the server was like, "There was a mix up in the kitchen. The owner will be over to talk to you about it," which never actually happened. They comped us our desserts (only 4 in our party of 8 actually ordered dessert), but didn't seem apologetic or concerned about the crummy service AT ALL. The food was good, but couldn't save this really bad overall experience.
5. Also? Lose the tiny water glasses that have to constantly be refilled. They're annoying and your servers couldn't keep up with the water bottle refills for our table for the entire meal.

O
vipOutstanding
Austin
29 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a wonderful Christmas Eve dinner!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
2 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Christmas Eve dinner - was perfection! We love this place!

JC
vipJessicaC
1 review
Dined on December 17, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Tour de forks on my birthday :) everything was wonderful as usual!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on December 17, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fantastic, and such good value for money too!
Tasty food, all of it, pleasantly surprised and exceeded expectations. Will return, many times!

FAQs

Cafe Malta offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (512) 853-9584.

Cafe Malta is rated 4.4 stars by 1033 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

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