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Around the world in food on Ibiza

A review of Ibiza Town’s Patrimoni Gastronòmic. 

Each year in the Ibiza low-season several restaurant events take place. Think affordable set menus, showcasing local cuisine, local products and the chef's talents in each venue.

Patrimoni Gastronòmic, running now until 29 March 2020, is one such event and we went along to try four of its participating restaurants to give you a flavour (I know) of these excellent culinary curations.

This event celebrates cuisines from places that, like Ibiza, enjoy UNESCO World Heritage status in restaurants in Ibiza Town. This year the cuisines span Ibiza, Peru, Vietnam and Mexico, which we tried as well as Mallorca, Cordoba in Spain and Israel, which we didn't. You can literally eat your way around the world without leaving the White Isle.

Join us now on our Ibiza trip around the world of food.


Ibiza


The THB Los Molinos hotel restaurant is one of many in this event serving Ibizan food, with its event menu a decidedly modern take on it. This restaurant, typical of many hotels, offers a food quality that belies what you expect. Service is swift and the wine selection top notch as evidenced by the excellent bottle of Albariño we tried.


Layered up: the aubergine milhojas

Starters were creative with first a selection of salmon preprared in many ways: a tartare of salmon at the plate's centre with two blinis on each side, one with a smoked salmon mousse, the other with salmon roe. An aubergine milhojas was layers of aubergine purée interwoven with discs of salmorejo soup firmed up with gelatine: very pretty and tasty.

We both went for the confit lamb as a main, which was cooked to supreme fork tenderness and shaped into nouvelle-cuisine-style triangles with couscous, topped with vegetables, a good complement, though it did need a bit more jazzing up flavour wise.


Gorgeous lemon meringue with fresh berries

Desserts were a mousse-like Tiramisu and a spectacular tile-plated lemon meringue with fresh berries. A lovely finish to a generally good menu.


Vietnam

Head chef Frank's grandparents, who inspired him in the kitchen at Bambú Viet Food


Vietnamese food is one of my favourite Asian cuisines where freshness is the watchword. Bambú Viet Food's French chef Frank is a quarter Vietnamese and has a true passion for food. Indeed, we even spied Anne Sijmonsbergen, author of the Eivizza: The Ibiza Cookbook, popping in for take-away, surely that has to be a plus in the place's favour.


Pho Bo soup a Vietnamese classic, inpired by French cuisine


Our set menu offered two starters, a main and a dessert, so we tried the lot and shared. Banh cuon, steamed rice rolls with pork and and mushrooms were delicious, topped with tofu, coriander and served on a bed of bean sprouts. Chicken spring rolls came with fresh mint on a lettuce leaf and, which you use to pick up and eat. We loved them.

Two classic soups next: a Wonton soup and a Pho Bo, which takes its origins from the French pot au feu, mixing it with Vietnamese flavours. Both were made from scratch and utterly delicious.


Tofu with soya sauce flavoured noodles, just watch the chilli


Mains were skewers of pork on rice noodles, topped with peanuts, a Vietnamese staple, plus stir-fried tofu with wheat noodles, enlivened with soya sauce and whole pieces of hot red chilli, to be bitten into carefully. They gave us two desserts, spheres of corn, filled with coconut jam and an off-menu (for this event) tapioca with banana. Yummy. All in all a winning menu. We'll be back to try the green papaya salad.


Peru

On to Casa Maca. This restaurant is set in an old finca, surrounded by vegetable gardens with panoramic views over Ibiza Town and the sea, even from the inside. It's possibly one of the nicest restaurants on ibiza.

Exploiting the South American roots of Columbian head chef, Álvaro David Ospina, Casa Maca served up an authentic and stimulating Peruvian menu. For starters, the Causa Limeña, a cold potato salad, was filled with a bounty of crispy, charcoal-grilled octopus, which added a unique and luxurious twist to this Peruvian staple.


Casa Maca's Patrimoni Gastronòmic menu selection

The main course of Ají de Gallina, a traditional chicken stew, was popping with spicy chilies and delicious when accompanied by an ice-cold beer.

Completed by a tart lemon dessert, the menu was generous and filling, offering excellent value for money. We left the restaurant feeling happy and fulfilled and went out to marvel at the fantastic view.


Mexico


Iconic El Hotel de Pacha was the setting for this little trip to Mexico. This is a wonderfully avant-garde-styled hotel, with a restaurant that sits at the back with large windows giving lots of natural light. High calibre attentive service is what you'll get here, no surprise for the Pacha Group.


Lovely quesadillas, superb comfort food

In the food, there is a three-course menu for this event with one choice in each segment. We liked the quesadilla, tortilla stuffed with vegetables and cheese as the starter. We all love cheesy vegetables and this worked well.

Its main, nachos with cooked minced meat was a little disappointing for this huge fan of Mexican food. I can only say that it's probably because the Spanish are a little spice heat averse, so for me it lacked those layers of flavour that chillies manage to bring out in Mexican dishes. For those that like less piquancy, we think you'll be in the right place.


My oh my: flambéed bananas with mezcal


Dessert more than made up for the lack of heat; who would not go for flambéed bananas with mezcal and home-made vanilla ice cream? A sweet ending.

All set menus in Patrimoni Gastronòmic are priced at €20 per person, excluding the drinks. Do check beverage prices as your good value meal could suddenly cost a lot more.

If you are visiting now, make sure to check out this event and the many more that fill the low-season - waistline be damned.


More food events are coming, soon with Pintxa San Antonio and Ibiza Sabor in spring, which also returns in autumn. Low-season, low prices, what can we say but enjoy.

See our selection of Ibiza restaurants open all year round, where you will find great places to tickle your taste buds.

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