Tucked away behind fairly non-descript doors in the tiny village square of Sant Joan (“Last village of Ibiza”) was one of those delightful wonders life occasionally surprises you with. Simply called the Giri Café, a restaurant awaits to tempt and delight.
Walking in, one is instantly impressed for the decor is an appealing blend of dark woods, beautifully finished bare stone walls & mirrors. Warm, sensual, it set the tone for what was to follow, perfectly.
With attentive staff, we were shown to our table, outside on the patio, beside a beautiful glass dining room and next to the organic vegetable garden. Nibbling on an understated Aubergine cream served with toast it stood well by itself, let alone as an introduction. The accompanying Strawberry Kiss cocktail had me in rapture.
Sweet cherry gazpacho followed - blissful, with a surprisingly complimentary bite from the fresh cheese that accompanied it.
Scallop tartar with lime, a signature dish from Head Chef Xavier Domenech Moreno, was a journey of palatable pleasure unto itself. My guest, well versed in fine dining and not so easily impressed, sat back with a contented "delicious".
The Pulpo followed, on a bed of fresh coleslaw, olives and tomatoes direct from the garden. Subtle, understated & teasingly moorish.
A main dish of lamb chops with orange, cinnamon, fresh fig, wild rosemary & mint was a mouth-watering finale. The chef came to our table & I had to reign in my enthusiasm for fear of other diners laughing but it transpired they also wanted to heartedly express their appreciation!
My guest chose the mango & passion fruit cheesecake with crumble. It was perhaps the most visually beautiful dessert I've seen on the island & the flavour matched (not photographed – book a table and delight in it yourself, trust me!). I chose the chocolate mousse and like every dish of the evening, it was exquisite.
The Head Chef Xavier Domenech Moreno started his career late in life. I expected to be told he was in the kitchen, creating from his mid-teens but in actual fact he started in his late twenties. That said, just two restaurants into his career he took on the mantle of Head Chef. World travelled, he delights in bringing the best of his experiences to the table, inspiring pleasure with his passion.
Over the last few months I've spoken with many who have eaten at the Giri Cafe and heard nothing but praise. My voice now joins that contented crowd.
Finally of course there was the bill for the evening. With a simple but exquisite menu (six main dishes available, none vegetarian) I expected something in the region of perhaps 60 euros plus, per person, not incl drinks.
It was less than 40 euros a head for three courses.
Couple this with all we had experienced, Giri Café is both an exceptionally good night out and genuinely good value. A perfect example of ‘know this; know Ibiza’.
Check out Giri Cafe, Sant Joan - for more details
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