The largest of the Balearic Islands, Mallorca is a foodie, Mediterranean paradise. Beyond the obvious appeal of sun and sea, this beautiful island is a favourite as an upscale destination thanks to the wide choice of elegant places to stay; a lively cultural scene; a rich history; unspoilt nature; and of course, the gastronomy.
The island’s capital Palma certainly punches above its weight when it comes to great places to eat. The choice of restaurants and gourmet bars found amongst the city’s elegant historic streets is growing ever-wider, each year.
Here are five restaurants I recommend you don’t miss next time you visit Palma de Mallorca.
Fera Restaurant & Bar
Over recent years Chef Simon Petutschnig has emerged as one of Mallorca’s most creative chefs. His collaboration with Iván & Sheela Levy, with the elegant restaurant Fera, takes dining out in Palma to a whole new level; combining culture, cuisine and fine art. Set back from Palma’s chic shopping avenue of Jaime III, Fera is found within an historic mansion, the city’s oldest club. Now transformed with contemporary Spanish art from the Levy Family collection; and bold, yet elegant interior design by Sheela Levy.
It’s a beautiful setting where Chef Petutschnig showcases his culinary talents with tempting dishes and elaborate tasting menus that celebrate local and regional Mediterranean produce, fused with fresh and creative Asian influences. Fridays are a fun time to visit to enjoy Fera’s glamorous cocktail bar, and a ‘Happy Hour’ menu of sake, cocktails and sushi tapas.
Dining menus include dishes like bluefin tuna; a contemporary interpretation of Dim Sum; and a fresh take on suckling pig. Vegetarians are well catered for too, with a dedicated gourmet tasting menu with creative dishes such as Thai style carrots with coconut, almond & curry; and mushroom risotto with rosemary & Parmesan.
El Patio de Gloria
Also found within one of the romantic, honey-coloured streets of old town is the 5-star boutique hotel, Gloria de Sant Jaume, an absolutely exquisite property that truly captures the appeal of historic Palma. Executive Chef Javier Gardonio leads the team in the restaurant, El Patio de Gloria, which is emerging as a new dining destination for residents and visitors alike.
The décor is both welcoming, with subtle lighting highlighting the ancient mares stone walls, and elegant with sparklingly set tables surrounded by velvet upholstered seating. The beautifully presented cocktail bar is the place to start a meal, before choosing a table in the cosy dining room, or the intimate patio courtyard, seated under the stars.
Chef Gardonio brings the love of good food from his home country of Argentina. So expect a fun, relaxed dining experience that encourages you to share dishes like excellent empanadas; an exceptional steak tartare with fois, infused with beechwood smoke; and the signature red mullet, which is flambéed at the table.
This eponymously named restaurant remains as popular as ever. Marc Fosh is the only British Chef in Spain to have a Michelin star. Fresh and local remains the restaurant’s mantra, and many of the vegetables and herbs used in the dishes come from the Marc Fosh farm Finca Son Mir.
Gastronomic tasting menus make this a destination restaurant. Lunchtime is a relaxed time, and the menus that are well-priced. Starters include marinated mackerel salad, and main dishes include roasted salmon or Iberian pork belly.
Botànic, Can Bordoy
Palma’s rich history has left a lasting architectural heritage including a myriad of marvellous mansions in old town. One of most noble has been romantically restored as a new exclusive boutique hotel, ‘Can Bordoy’. The house has a charming walled garden, full of fragrant fruits trees; inspiring the restaurant Botanic. Choose a table in the garden, on the terrace or inside, where the urban oasis seems to enter the house with the dining and drawing rooms having plants on the ceilings and walls, in a fairy-tale-like design.
Chef Andrés Benitez creates a relaxed style during the day with all-day breakfasts, sharing platters, healthy salad bowls, sandwiches, and delicious tapas like Moray fritters with turmeric mayonnaise. Dinner is a fine-dining affair, but equally healthy and nourishing.
Petit C’an Punta Port
A few minutes’ east of Palma’s town centre and close to the beach one finds this harbour restaurant in the bohemian Portixol / Molinar district. It’s a glorious alternative to the upscale dining of the centre. Here you feel part of Mallorca’s relaxed coastal vibe. A great spot to enjoy cocktails and sundowners; and ‘street-food’ style Mediterranean fare with global influences. Think smoked octopus with Thai salad; or catch of day with a crisp, dry Mallorcan white wine. It’s a relaxed, sociable place.