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Food Review: Discover the fruits of Higo's secret garden

Quality Japanese fusion food, just off the beaten track.

Holidaymakers and residents in the beach resort of Santa Eulalia have a mind-boggling choice of options when deciding where to dine of an evening. Many great restaurants rub shoulders along the seafront, clamouring for customers’ attention. But most offer variations of the same culinary theme. Which makes Higo, located just a little out of sight, well worth making the effort to discover.

Set back a little behind the Sport Marina, the surroundings are tranquil and free from passing traffic. The outside garden terrace is cool and breezy, with a partial sea view, and the rattan seating is comfortably relaxed and unpretentious – perfectly fitting for the sociable nature of the cuisine.  

Keen to find out what has changed since our initial visit a year ago, we returned to Higo for a chance to run the rule over the new menu. While no longer strictly Nikkei, becoming more pan-Asian, the most immediate thing to notice is that the choice has been slimmed down to a selection of the most popular hits from Higo’s back catalogue.

Fortunately, the restaurant’s sharing concept remains, as does the warm and hearty welcome you will receive from manager Stephanie on arrival. It seems the whole team shares her passion for service and making sure their clients have the most enjoyable experience possible. By the end of the night, you will be on familiar terms with all your waiting staff, who are always on hand to inform you about their dishes and will guide you through your choices.

Japanese/Peruvian Nikkei fusion cuisine has been riding a wave of popularity for the past four or five years and Ibiza has benefitted from this trend with the opening of many great new restaurants. Love for the cuisine stems from the simplicity of the preparation and the freshness of the ingredients required to make the recipes really sing. Anyone serving below-par dishes is instantly revealed, so standards must remain high at all times. 

Similarly, the typical practice in a Japanese restaurant is to see the chefs at work in an open kitchen, and it is great to see that tradition is upheld at Higo. In fact, it’s fair to say the chefs love to be watched prepping and plating their food right in front of your eyes and the dishes that emerge are fresh, colourful and vibrant.

Tradition also dictates that we commence our evening with an obligatory aperitif from the cocktail selection. Higo has a range of cocktails to rival many high-end restaurants and are delivered with style and a few surprises. Higo’s cocktail alchemists create their own syrups, including the curiously addictive coriander syrup in the Cilantro Sour.

A team favourite, however, was the Taste of Ibiza cocktail with Havana 3 Rum, pineapple and Passoa (passion fruit liqueur) and citrus-flavoured smoke captured inside a bubble!

Spicy, yet refreshing, Higo’s unique take on Sangria is prepared with passion fruit, cardamom, cloves, black pepper and red wine reduction.

To commence our fusion feast, we were presented with the neatest stack of Padrón peppers we’ve ever seen. Accompanied by asparagus and pomegranate, this was a real twist on a traditional favourite that met with unanimous approval.

Then the dishes began to flow, to the click of competing chopsticks, snapping like the beaks of hungry birds.

Two plates of fresh spinach salad, with glass noodles and black truffle shavings, were quickly devoured.

A delicious plate of succulent salmon and octopus tiraditos with corn tachos never stood a chance…

Huge parcels of tuna tartar, wrapped in nori and levitating on a base of crispy rice and cloaked in a miso leaf, were swooped upon and gulped down with gusto.

A perennial favourite, Higo’s Yakatori chicken is always sweet and succulent and perfectly captures the wonder of Japanese cuisine, especially when it’s paired with the tempura vegetables with Tonkatsu sauce. Needless to say, the tempting skewers were soon licked clean.

The pace began to slow as we awaited the final dish - an Argentinian rib eye with grilled seasonal veg and pico de gallo salsa. This steak was as good as any you’re likely to find and fun to finish off by grilling to our tastes on the charcoal Robata. A few shared slivers of the juicy beef finished off the main courses perfectly.

‘El coco’ coconut ice cream with dulce de leche (caramelised milk) and Macha foam was a light and fluffy way to polish off a great sharing experience.

It’s worth repeating that making the effort to uncover a diamond-like Higo is a rewarding experience in itself. And, when everyone is equally engaged in the meal, sharing and savouring each morsel, it makes the moment even more memorable.

Dining should always be a shared experience and the menu at Higo serves that need perfectly. We recommend you go for a look and take a cruise through the menu too. Book your table today and discover a real gem.


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