I recently admitted that a couple of years ago I would rather have chewed a tyre than make the journey to Aura for dinner. How things change. This year already I’ve enjoyed four events at Aura – two private parties, the 2012 Opening and a few nights later, a quiet dinner.
Auras outdoor dining area is huge, currently covered by an enormous high ceiling canopy that with the subtle décor and lighting gives a warming glow to everything. The canopy will remain in place until June (and then diners will be able to enjoy Ibiza’s stunning night skies with endless shooting stars, right from their tables).
Despite how early it is in the season, Auras staff were plentiful (compared to many establishments that scrimp on service until it’s a more profitable time of year). Wine list perused, menu poured over (always a good sign when myself and guest want at least two starters and two mains… not to mention the entire dessert menu… ) we ordered.
It is here that I should comment that the service throughout the evening was superb. Our waitress Laura was informed about Aura, the menu and any query or request I had.
It should also be noted that my guest and I were able to chat quietly, discreetly, easily whilst the nearest table to us consisted of nine quite enthused diners and music played throughout. In essence, you’re not on top of others and that I like enormously.
I chose the Grilled Mediterranean king prawns on ‘sand’ with rose harissa mayonnaise and enjoyed it greatly, to the extent of cheekily dipping my bread into the remaining sauce. My guest chose the Rosemary-seared beef & beet tagliata with horseradish buttermilk. Whilst that cut of beef was a tiny bit tough, the flavours and textures were excellent. It was a good start.
Then it was time for one of Auras two new dishes. I had decided on the Whole, (yes, whole) organic, spit-roasted chicken with preserved and fresh lemons, homemade focaccia and dressed baby leaves.
The chicken is brought to your table, carved and served. It was perfect – tender, moist with a wonderful flavour. “Melt in the mouth” could have been coined for that moment. The Focaccia and baby leaf salad was also enjoyable, the salad a surprise with rose petals and unexpectedly salty – a combination that appealed to me.
Heartily content (both starter and main course were of generous size) dessert was refreshingly light. I was intrigued by the cardamom & rose rice, with wild rose jam and pistachio, not least because I don’t like cardamom but the combination held my attention. I’m so glad I don’t mind knocking myself out of my culinary comfort zone sometimes because it was delicious, the cardamom judged just right, accompanying the dish rather than overwhelming it.
Aura haven’t forgotten about the islands children; arrive before 20.15 and your children eat free. I was tickled to note the children’s menu had three mains and four desserts. Either way, I thought it exceedingly generous from a venue the calibre of Aura.
It is difficult to judge an average spend at Aura because the menu offers options for most budgets. Our evening, which was at the upper end of the menu, was just 45 euros pp, not including drinks.
So, that’s four visits to date this year. The food, the ambience, the great service, amazing cocktails… I wonder if I should count just how many times I do go to Aura? I suspect I shall run out of fingers.
To explore further - Aura, Ibiza - Lounge bar & Restaurant, San Lorenzo
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