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Ibiza Winter Diary - Eating Ibiza style

Surfing, food and more food...

The weather in Ibiza last week was moody to say the least. The sky was overcast and the threat of rain was forever around the corner. However, along with this occasionally dull weather comes a comforting serenity. The island taking a pause in between the blue skies and sunshine and giving everyone and everything a bit of a breather. So instead of the usual urge to be outside drinking coffee or running on the beach, activities were a little more sedate.

Monday and Tuesday - Surf watch, Cala Nova

Apparently, there is a promise of more surf, or so the website said. Once again, the surfboard was transported across town by my boyfriend, accompanied by some strange looks, and we headed off to find these fabled waves that were allegedly lurking somewhere on the east coast. Now I seldom visit these beaches, but Cala Nova and Aguas Blancas feel much more rugged than the manicured shores of Salinas and Bossa. Although there wasn't an opportunity to get in the water due to the waves being too small, we did enjoy a post surf-watch drink at the wonderful Atzaro Beach in Cala Nova, the sister chiringuito to Atzaro's Spa, which is open all year round. A good couple of days of exploring the lesser visited parts of the island.

Wednesday - Santa Eulalia lunch

As an avid Indian cook, I usually prefer to eat my curries at home, but an invite to the Royal India in Santa Eulalia for lunch by a fellow Indian friend is impossible to resist. This family-friendly Punjabi-run establishment took me straight back to the flocked wallpapered curry houses of Bradford where the warm welcome is unbeatable! We ordered ‘home-style' food continuously for 2 hours and enjoyed golden nuggets of onion pakoras, deliciously charred meat kebabs and chicken tikkas, and both vegetable and meat curries, all cooked lovingly in very little oil and oozing rich sauce all over our naans. With Bollywood videos playing in the background on the large screen, this mid-week binge was a treat indeed. We washed it down with masala chai and for once, there wasn't even enough to take home with us. We had greedily eaten it all!

Thursday - Hostal La Torre

The sun in Ibiza sets on another day at around 18:30 at the moment and after a day of work, we decide to head over to Cala Gracioneta near San Antonio for a cocktail, and to watch arguably the greatest show the island has to offer. And we clearly aren't the only ones with this idea as both the restaurant and the blustery terrace are busy with groups and couples waiting for sundown with nibbles and drinks. We sit inside the awning for warmth and protection from the wind, which is whipping the sea water up on to the cliffs. But as the sun starts to make its descent, every member of the clientele, and some of the staff, move outside to watch the sun disappear into the sea. And it is gorgeous. Peaceful and romantic. I am SO glad that this fantastic venue is open in the winter too!

Friday - Food Studio

So I have heard a lot about the Ibiza Food Studio, which is located in my own neighbourhood in the old fisherman's part of the port, or Sa Penya. Situated in a charming and rustic venue, a few tables and an open kitchen play host to one of the most captivating food experiences I have had in Ibiza. The mastermind behind the concept is Boris, a remarkably talented Danish chef. He is not only passionate about local produce, but his Scandinavian heritage means his cooking techniques involve precision and foraged ingredients. He designs a 4 or 6 course taster menu every week, and cooks and presents it himself. We were lucky enough to be sitting on the chef's table which is pretty much in the kitchen and it was fascinating to observe the due care and attention to detail displayed by Boris and his assistant. With only 2 other tables occupied, one by a group of 12 women and another by a Spanish couple, the whole experience was intimate and super-special. And the food. WOW! An extraordinary meal, perfectly executed! We went for the full shebang - 6 courses with wine-pairing. We were not disappointed. If you have no problem with eating whatever has been handpicked that day, represented in a unique style by the eccentric and enthusiastic chef, and if you promise to stay open-minded to the experience, I can guarantee you will have a mind-blowing time. The service by the gorgeous lone waitress Leah was also second-to-none and we came away satisfied that we had at last found somewhere outstanding to eat on the island. And right next door to my house. What luck!

Ibiza Winter Diaries

WORDS | Leena Sharma

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