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Food Review: Cocktails, cuisine and clubbing at El Restaurante

Savour every element of the whole Pacha experience

Having supped some very satisfying, pre-dinner cocktails in the bar of Pacha Group’s newly refurbished El Hotel, we made the short stroll across the road to El Restaurante with a spring in our step and a real sense of anticipation for the night ahead.

El Hotel, just across the road from El Restaurante

Globally renowned Pacha is more than just a clubbing brand. It is a lifestyle, an aesthetic, an experience. And, on this occasion, we were determined to immerse ourselves in it completely.

Obligatory! Espresso Martini

Situated adjacent to the main club, El Restaurante is typical of the group’s venues - quirky yet always seeming to encapsulate the essence of Ibiza. The command to ‘eat everything’ greets us as we enter the restaurant. Considering that you can even eat your way into the club for free, we vowed to do just that…

The downstairs Al Fresco dining area

Tables downstairs in the lush, leafy terrace are secluded and intimate, but we opt instead for a table upstairs in the snug old Finca, rubbing shoulders with our neighbours. Forming part of the original farmhouse, this area of the restaurant connects to the club via the club's entrance bar and the notorious Funky Room. As we dine, we witness the arrival of the first clubbers as the bar begins to buzz.

Night after night during the season Pacha’s lineup offers clubbers a choice of the finest DJ talent from around the world, backed up by the highest standard of sound quality, staging, and lighting - all the components necessary for a satisfying clubbing experience. A question on everyone’s lips was whether the quality of El Restaurante’s cuisine could match up to the production standards worthy of the brand. The answer was a resounding YES!

After a long-standing love affair with sushi and Japanese cuisine, the Pacha kitchen has taken a leap and reverted to more traditional Mediterranean values. Fitting considering the brand's DNA originates in Sitges, Barcelona and our beloved island. There are no starters and mains as such. Instead, the menu now consists of 22 dishes to pick from, to create your own unique sharing experience

We let our charming waitress choose our destiny and she brought us a fine selection of dishes which all combined to create a well-rounded and rewarding meal.

Carpaccio of finely sliced courgette

There is plenty for vegetarians to enjoy on the Pacha menu and the carpaccio of finely sliced courgette, with a generous handful of salty Parmesan, watercress and a sight crunch of something nutty was as delicious to behold as it was to eat.

Steak Tartare

Steak Tartare lovers will adore the citrus and peppery zing of Pacha’s Belgian-style version.

Beautifully fresh Seafood salad

Chilled and fresh, the soft and creamy seafood salad which scuttled onto our table encased in a brass crab shell. 

Tomato Tartar

Another vegetarian dish, Tomato Tartar, with a Stracciatella de Bufala and pistachio dip and fresh Greek olives was another big winner.

Wild Mushroom Risotto

Non-meat eaters will also be enchanted by the Wild Mushroom Risotto. It is hard to imagine producing a better version of this dish – perfectly al dente rice with a robust, beefy flavour to match.

Crispy Suckling Pig Belly

However, the most popular dish of the night was Crispy Suckling Pig Belly, with roasted grapefruit with vanilla and cubes of quince jelly. Possibly the most Spanish of the dishes, the succulence of each sliver of pork was truly exceptional.

Diced Beef Tenderloin

Diced Beef Tenderloin, sauteed with mushrooms and foie Gras, was verging on a traditional stroganoff but with even extra richness added by the pâté.

Pacha’s dessert menu may be short on options but is BIG on style and substance, plus a dollop of whimsical humour.

Deconstructed cheesecake in a picnic hamper

First up, a completely deconstructed cheesecake arrived in a picnic hamper. The fresh fruit compote, biscuit and a delicious wheel of cream cheese were all served separately and reassembled at leisure and pleasure.

Chocolate Sponge Cake, a sensual delight

‘Chocolate Sponge Cake’ is possibly the blandest way possible to describe this delicious wonder! Chocolate bizcocho, topped with a coffee-rich ganache, was doused in rum and set ablaze, to create a sensual delight.   

More fun was evident with the Vanilla infused Pineapple, passion fruit ravioli and coconut ice cream. Fused at the table they combined to create a frothy, foamy fizz and a faint tickle of popping candy erupting at the back of the throat. 

DJ Ainsley

Naturally, music takes a central role in the El Restaurante experience. On this occasion, the resident DJ Ainsley played a steady flow of Funky House tunes and club classics, gradually increasing in volume and tempo as the evening progressed. Inevitably, satisfied and lubricated diners congregated around the booth for an impromptu after-dinner dance, in true Pacha style, before making their way to the main dancefloor.

Bedouin's amazing neon display at the Pacha entrance

We too headed off inside the club to check out the evolving Wednesday night Saga. After an epic entree set by Henrick Schwarz and the delicious main course served by the Bedouin boys, we emerged 5 hours later, our minds blown and our stomachs sated. This truly was the full Pacha experience. And we loved it.

Choose your favourite Pacha night from the Ibiza Spotlight Party Calendar and reserve your table at El Restaurante today.

(Entrance to the club is free for diners, subject to minimum spend).

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