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A spirited food experience at Cova Santa Ibiza

A new menu of beautifully executed dishes using the finest produce awaits you at this spectacular venue.


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Why go? A beautiful setting in nature with spectacular views

What kind of food is it? An eclectic mix of the great cuisines of the world, with an accent on excellent seafood

Who is it for? People who want very fine food that's high on freshness and quality

Can anyone go? Yes and there are some lovely 'foodie' dishes for vegetarians and vegans

Best table? The VIP pagoda if you can afford it - all tables have a fabulous view though


The venue

Built into the hillside, Cova Santa is surrounded by verdant lushness. The restaurant is a large open-plan edifice, built out of wood and canopied. A place that is in harmony with the nature surrounding it.

Above you in the dining area are the curved terracotta ceiling tiles, typical of Ibizan white-painted country houses. There's an air of luxury as well with soft night lighting inside producing predominantly purple and orange hues, like the calming light after sunset. Outside, the words Cova Santa made of huge letters on stilts with blue spotlights that point outwards make you feel you have arrived at somewhere quite fabulous.

The ambience

Aperitifs in the natural cave

Music has an understated yet buzzy electronic vibe and blends well into the restaurant atmosphere. There's a nice amount of excitement and chatter from the clients and service is discreet, polite, friendly and top notch.

You hear a happy hum and each table feels private. The only day that this would change would be Sundays when down below the restaurant it's WooMoon, where DJs from all over the world and dance shows combine to create a spiritual sound with a Cirque de Soleil like display. In the restaurant you can happily observe and take part in the proceedings.

The food

A succulent platter of sashimi

First it was aperitifs in the awe-inspiring natural cave that's next to the restaurant. Descending the stairs to a Jurrasic world of rocky formations, we marvelled at the beauty of this subterranean world, once the refuge of pirates. Watermelon with tequila and passion fruit filled with white spirits set us up for the trip back up to try the food.

Lucky for us to go on a culinary tour of the entire menu with eight tasting courses; and time to unfasten those belts! This year, Cova Santa gets a brand new food concept, courtesy of Espai Kru, one of Spain's top restaurant groups. This brings the finest produce around with with touches and techniques of far-flung countries known for their cuisines the world over.

Cured anchovy fillets arrived under a glass dome which was filled with wood smoke; a salty, smokey sensuous taste to tantalise the palate along with a guacamole with plantain tortilla chips. Indeed, much is of the sea and our next round of courses was just a dream of underwater delights.

Chilling out, the oysters and clams

Ponzu flavoured oysters topped with salmon caviar and giant clams with hibiscus were greedily and gratefully eaten up. This was swiftly followed by a platter of sashimi. Raw pieces of sea bream, red tuna, hamachi and Alaskan salmon were beautiful in the presentation and exquisite to the taste.

Next and a first for us all was a carpaccio of toro, the soft fatty underbelly of the tuna fish and the most highly-prized part of it - ask any Japanese person about this cut and you will see their eyes glitter with utter joy. Moving onto land, two tartares came to greet us, one of Galician beef fillet and one of tomato, two star ingredients from the Spanish table and very well executed.

Wagyu beef strips that celebrate the discovery of fire

Our next dishes moved from the raw to the cooked: a whole turbot cubed and battered was soft, silky and fresh. Served on the deep-fried bones of the fish, we were invited to eat these too: a faint fishy flavour came through and yes, it was lovely too. Strips of Wagyu beef came with a heated dish for us to cook ourselves and as these delicious tender slices of beef slipped down to our stomachs, we celebrated the discovery of fire.

Dessert was delicately flavoured pieces of pineapple and an ingot-like bar of a smooth chocolate mousse-like dessert. Whilst quite full at this point, no one could resist the freshness and then the indulgence of these sweet treats.

An 'ingot' of chocolate indulgence

We left Cova Santa and went into the night, bellies full and the happy memory of food that reminds you of your primal nature, fresh, natural and pure.

Ibiza Spotlight tip

Go for raw in the tartares, carpaccios or ceviches just to get the sparkling freshness of some of the best food ingredients around.

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