Quiet, relaxed, and moderately formal without being too forced, Primošten is one of one of Zagreb's best south-of-the-centre venues for a leisurely taste of Adriatic cuisine. Fresh fish forms the backbone of the menu: it can be grilled, baked, stewed, or served gregada-style in a white wine sauce, depending on your wishes. There are also fillets of fish served in a range of imaginative sauces (such as sea bass with Roquefort cheese, or gilthead with prawns and fennel). Everything that comes out of the kitchen is well presented, portions are on the Croatian side (ie large), and solicitous service is never very far away. The desserts are outstanding, and the Sava river embankment is a short distance to the south – providing you with an excellent opportunity to walk it all off afterwards.
Despite a location overlooking the sea from the Primošten peninsula, the Konoba Papec (Splitska 9) offers all the Dalmatian favourites at pre-boom prices. Don’t miss the pre-dinner samples of local specialities at this rustic tavern, one of Primošten’s oldest and most photographed townhouses. The small, dark interior with thick stone walls is decorated with traditional costumes and wine-making equipment. Outside, wooden benches and wine-barrel tables provide lovely sunset seating. The friendly owner, born in the house, brings out reasonably priced bite-size portions of goats’ cheese soaked in olive oil, prosciutto and olives, paired with a glass of Babić wine or a shot of rakija, all own-made in the local villages.
Tucked in from the seafront on Primošten’s prominent headland, the Konoba Galeb is a godsend for those holidaying on a budget. Dalmatian favourites – grilled meat, seafood risotto, scampi – are piled high in huge portions, meaning that you can save yourself for one meal a day. This may as well be the evening meal as, given the Adriatic-facing location, you can take in the sunset as you chomp into your škampi na žaru, served with a side of chips and a salad. Throw in a glass of house wine or a cold beer, and your affordable dining experience is complete.
Opened in 2016, Agape Kitchen & Wine Bar has a more modern approach to cuisine than the more traditional and longer-established taverns surrounding it. Here, meals may start with tapas, which come in four varieties, Agape (with Dalmatian smoked ham, bacon and cheeses), Dalmatian (a chef’s choice of seafood), Primošten (with swordfish, tuna and truffle cheese) and marino (a platter for four featuring grilled octopus, salmon and stuffed squid). Steak and lamb feature heavily on the main menu but if the tapas have done the job, then you can opt for a lighter fillet of monkfish with cauliflower purée and sun-dried tomatoes. It’s also a wine bar, you’ll find quality Pošip Čara from Korčula, Plavac Mali from Brač and Babić produced nearby.
At the Restaurant Kamenar, a well-equipped Welcome Bar extends your dining experience from a notch-above sit-down meal to a notch-above sit-down meal prefaced by a glass or two of local Babić complemented with a plate of prosciutto, Dalmatian cheese and sardines. Then, when you and your table are good and ready, comes the sea bass or grouper, john dory or bream, steak in scampi sauce or anglerfish with lemon. Of the two dining rooms, pick the one in the back with family bric a brac: black-and-white snapshots, an old radio and aerial photos of Primošten from the 1960s. If you’d prefer to dine outside, mulberry and acacia trees shade the terrace. Guestrooms are also available if you’d like to stay over.