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Indulging in a delightful symphony of flavours at Zela

Exquisite presentation, divine flavours of “Meppon” cuisine - this restaurant makes the perfect Ibiza launchpad for a night to remember.

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Why go? For a fine dining experience which can be shared amongst good friends

What kind of food is it? Japanese with Mediterranean and Peruvian influences

Who is it for? Fine-dining lovers with a passion for seafood and reasonably deep pockets

Can anyone go? On an extensive menu there are very few vegetarian options

Best table? Most tables give a feeling of intimacy.


The venue

Cocktail bar at Zela, Ibiza

Zela, situated between Pacha nightclub and Talamanca beach, is a modern Asian fusion restaurant, presenting its own concept of “Meppon” cuisine. Offering a menu designed by celebrated Executive Chef Victor Planas, it is perfectly situated as the launchpad for a great night out on Ibiza.


The ambience

A warming welcome awaits at Zela, Ibiza


Inside Zela is an elegant bar where you can choose to sip an aperitif from the reasonably priced cocktail list, while the resident DJ spins or one of the weekend live music acts entertains. But it's outside, seated in stylish Japanese minimalism and sheltered amongst the walls of lush, verdant shrubs, miniature olive trees and tropical palms, that Zela comes into its own on a summer evening. The restaurant attracts a very international crowd of glamorous diners with high expectations and the level of service matches them.

Head Chef Curro Gullón explained, with great passion and attention to detail, the menu, which is predominantly Japanese but with unique Zela twists and touches of typical Ibizan ingredients and South American influences. Meticulously prepared seafood dominates, but there are some dishes from the land that will take your breath away.


The food

“Sunomono”, a Japanese cucumber salad, with squid, from Zela, Ibiza

It would be hard to provide every detail of the artistry that went into the menu creation, so here are some of the highlights of the delightful symphony of our 13 courses, which took us on a journey through Japan, from coastline to forest.

The overture began with steamed edamame beans, served with rock salt infused with lime and the seven-spice blend shichimi. Closely followed up by light, crispy rice souffles topped with smoked salmon, burrata and delicate cubes of tomato water jelly and some zingy, fried gyozas stuffed with ginger, vegetables and pork.

A highlight was the “Sunomono”, a Japanese cucumber salad, with squid tentacles that had been marinated overnight in ginger and lime. The locally-caught Ibizan squid is instantly deep-frozen to minus 65, to capture its succulence the moment it leaves the sea. It was unanimously voted as the tastiest squid ever.


Zela, Ibiza's Ceviche of rock lobster, marinated in tiger's milk

Next, we took a little time to appreciate three stunning raw fish courses. The award for the most beautiful, and possibly the finest, dish of the day would have to go to the carpaccio of Galician scallops, marinated only in olive oil and topped with a sprinkle of crunchy sobrasada sausage and black pork. Presented in an under-lit scallop shell, each delicate slice dissolved easily on the tongue.

Slices of Bluefin toro Usuzukuri, considered the most delectable cut of the tuna, came next topped with tomato and flakes of “crystal” bread. This plate was an imaginative update of the traditional pan con tomate, staple of any Spanish kitchen, and the flavours of the three key ingredients combined perfectly.

A ceviche of rock lobster, marinated in tiger's milk with a spicy yuzu dipping sauce again got full marks for presentation; the ceviche arrived splendidly in a lobster tail with the dipping sauce representing the yolk of a broken egg.


48 hour Wagyu beef in teriyaki saucef at Zela Ibiza

Next we dived inland with a complex bowl of fried rice containing three types of Japanese mushrooms, soya, sake, mirin, truffle puree and flakes of flakes of dried tuna. Each mouthful was full of woodland flavours, with the occasional crackle of fried rice.

The meal reached a stunning crescendo with the 48-hour slow-cooked Wagyu beef in teriyaki sauce. After two days cooked in sous vide at 75 degrees, this incredible dish was practically melting. Garnished simply with a celery purée, sesame seeds and pumpkin flowers, it had a gooey, almost liquid, centre. None of us had ever experienced a beef dish so tender.


The drinks

Carefully designed cocktails to complement the menu at Zela, Ibiza

Cocktails are carefully designed and play a very important role in the Zela experience to complement your meal. Each has a different Japanese ingredient such as yuzu juice or shiso syrup made from a refreshing Japanese mint. Zela will happily mix bespoke cocktails according to your tastes.

We tried a varied selection: a “Lost Coconut”, a refreshing take on a piña colada but with cranberry juice served in a fresh coconut shell; a deliciously bitter Hattorei made from ginger, grapefruit, and sugar with an Earl Grey foam and a “Kaguya”, a sweet and sour treat with Pisco, basil water and yuzu juice.

Zela is a restaurant for true gastronomic aficionados. Each course is precise, with its own clear identity, and, if it's true that we eat with our eyes, the attention to presentation is very satisfying. Obviously quality comes at a price, though if you want to be taken on a culinary adventure, the ten-course taster menu at a mere €100 per person will certainly not disappoint.

Ibiza Spotlight Tip

For a unique experience, meat lovers will adore sharing the wagyu teriaki.

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