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Review: Café Bondi: San Antonio's healthy new addition

Tasty food for thought

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There's several things you might think when you choose to eat out healthily: that the place will redeem your naughtiness or you'll be made to feel worse by the holier than thou staff who point out all your food failures. Café Bondi is none of the latter and thankfully a good part of the former. Its whole approach goes beyond healthy eating: sustainability and caring for the community are up there too.

Bondi, café restaurant interior, San Antonio, Ibiza

Opening in April this year it has brought a fresh and vibrant approach to the strip of restaurants overlooking the Paseo Martimo in San Antonio. Its impact is already seeing some of its neighbours take note, freshening up their décor and food offerings. Café Bondi aims to continually innovate, so the game of catch up could be an interesting one.


Something for everyone

So what do you get? Here we have a place that caters for all types of people looking to eat good quality and healthy food. Its meat, eggs and butter are organic, ditto the veg, which is also locally-sourced as is the milk which comes from Santa Gertrudis. There's a lot of vegetarian and some vegan options; they offer gluten free breads (and soon pizza bases); cocktails feature more fresh fruit and less refined sugar; local wines in red, white and pink are available; there's a Josper Grill, normally reserved for Michelin-starred venues which uses 40% less carbon and makes the meat taste delicious.

Clearly, a lot of thought has gone into this new concept from the Mambo Group. There's fair trade coffee, almond, oat and soya milks on offer and you'll see a selection of cold-pressed juices, detox mineral waters and metabolism-boosting healthy shots and superfood smoothies. - a great way to blast away the effects of the night before. You can still get a full English breakfast and order a Strawberry Daiquiri with a tequila chaser if you want and no one will bat an eyelid. The motto is 'Healthy and Happy Food' and that is exactly what you get, minus the attitude.


Delicious charcoal infused grills

The restaurant is open from 9am until late and is open all year round. In winter the kitchen closes at around 10pm going on to 2am in the summer season. We went along for lunch to try some of the delicious charcoal-flavoured meat from that Josper Grill.

We started with a big place of nachos to share and here is where you start to see the difference in this place. The tortilla chips are organic and all the salsas are freshly made – no ambient bottles of pre-prepared gunk here. There was pico de gallo (tomato, onion and chilli), avocado salsa, a good soured cream, and chopped spring onions for our cheese-topped wonders - we didn't feel in the slightest bit guilty about wolfing it down.

Then came our grilled meat: a fillet steak and the biggest portion of barbecue ribs I've ever seen. The steak was cryingly tender and tastily infused with smokey charcoal flavour. The ribs were glazed lightly with a home-made barbecue flavouring and had been slow cooked and fell apart when you bit in. We also had some of the grilled vegetables, which they also offer as a vegetarian mai; this had whole artichokes, carrots, mushrooms and onions deeply flavoured from being cooked on that grill. You get chips and salad with all the grill items and if you want you can substitute your standard fries for sweet potato ones - and it's worth it. Apparently, so popular are they that customers pass by just to get them as a take away. I've tried and failed many times to make them as good as this.


Guilt-free and sweet

Slightly defeated by the volume of great food, we shared a white chocolate cheesecake made with healthier goats cheese. I'm not the biggest fan of this dessert, but this really won me over with that nice tang of goat, which lifted it well above the norm. They also do a great carrot cake also available with an afternoon tea they do for €5.

Right now until 13 December there's a fixed price menu as part of the local cheese themed Restaurat restaurant festival for €15 and they'll be doing their own fixed-price menu when that ends. If you want to sample their food, on Fridays and Saturdays they do a €2 pincho and beer offer. There are even kids activities every Tuesday and recently they've been helping the little ones to make lanterns, Christmas decorations and Minion boxes. There really is something for everyone at this place and long may that continue.


QUICK FACTS

What? Café Bondi

Where? Passeig de Ses Fonts, San Antonio

When? 9am till late all year round (closed Wednesdays)

Why? Gym bunnies, the health conscious, the socially conscious and casual customers are all catered for

Average spend per head? €25 for starter, main, dessert and a glass of house wine

Veggie Options? A big bunch, plus those with food intolerances catered for too

Disabled Facilities? Yup, plus there's a ramp and even baby changing facilities too

Top tips? Sweet potato fries anyone?

Room for Improvement? They're working on that!


WORDS: Julian Heathcote PHOTOGRAPHY: Peter Young

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