Eating our way around Mallorca

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Dr T, MGG and I have just returned from a week in Mallorca. The quiet part, as I hastened to tell people. Which is a bit unfair to Mallorca, as the majority of the island is beautiful and bears no resemblance to Magalluf. As you would expect, we did a fair bit of eating. Not the Michelin starred type of eating, although this is entirely possible for a whole week in Mallorca, as there are a large number of places with stars. No, this was much more down to earth, good food, good atmospheres, and keeping all the family happy. Here’s a few highlights:

Pan fried salmon with cumin

A not very Mallorcan dish to start, and not a very Mallorcan place to eat. In fact, my foodie heart sank slightly at the sight of the Scottish brunch on the menu. But La Font del Gall in Pollença is about good food, not just catering to Scots abroad. The Scottish brunch was followed on the menu by a salmon brunch, and a very decent menu of the day. A little off the main drag, but worth finding on Calle Montesion.

Hake served with taste and a view

Sometimes, simple is best, and this is the fresh hake and chips at Balada del Agua del Mar in Port de Pollença. Sit outside, under the fig tree, enjoy the view and some good simple cooking. The plate of Mallorcan cheeses with crudites made a great starter too.

Table with a view

Of course, you don’t go on holiday somewhere like this for rain, but on Easter Sunday I was grateful for it. If it had been dry, we might have got out and walked round Porto Christo to find lunch. Which means we’d have missed a great lunch in Porto Colom. We chose the place that was busiest, filled with Mallorcan families (18 at one table, with about 4 generations) and were richly rewarded:

Dates wrapped in bacon. Bliss
Peppers stuffed with tuna
Squid, simple

Not only did we get a great lunch, but the rain went away and the sun came out. An Easter miracle indeed.

You  may find yourself praying for miracles and deliverance if you take the mountain roads up to Soller (or cheat and pay the toll to go through the tunnel). Worth it though, as Soller is beautiful, and the train journey down to Palma and back is atmospheric and memorable. It’s worth seeking out the bakers further away from the station, which is not as fancy but equally not as pricey. Both will provide you with good picnic goods though, with empanadas and different kinds or pies and pastries.

Perfect picnic for a train ride through the orange groves
Pies, Mallorcan style
Marzipan mountains and chocolate goodies

Of course, it wouldn’t be right to be somewhere like this without tapas. We had a chaotic tapas lunch at a place in Palma, that involved ordering twice, getting the bill for someone else’s table, no drinks arriving for ages…but pretty tasty fare being delivered.

Tapas, eventually

But like many memorable meals, it can be as much about the company you keep as the food you eat. We had a great tapas lunch, overlooking the sea in Port de Pollença with a family we had a met. It’s not often you sit down with a Falkland Islander and a recreational lobster pot man, a former air hostess and family, but we did and 18 different dishes arrived, most of which swiftly disappeared. Along with the wine.

Tapas by the sea

So, this wasn’t lunch at Son Brull’s restaurant, but it was memorable, tasty and fabulous. We weren’t ensconced in luxury at Reads Hotel, but if you’re travelling with kids under about 12, or are keen cyclists, then the Pollentia Club Resort is a great base. Although I think their chefs might need more to do…

When chefs have too much time on their hands

Needless to say, didn’t eat the cheese off the buffet next day!

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Helen Tarver

Collector of great gifts and fabulous food, mum, cake baker & eater, wine opener. I write about food and the gift of it in its many forms.

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