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Food Review: Dining like kings at Taste of Salia

Prepare to be wowed by the innovative Mediterranean cuisine at this tranquil seaside hotel

For anyone visiting Ibiza looking to sample truly authentic Spanish cuisine, it’s sometimes necessary to search in some unlikely locations. One such example is Taste of Salia, an unassuming little seaside restaurant in the Intercorp Group’s Can Salia Hotel at the farthest end of San Antonio Bay.  

Named after the local samphire, salicornias, that grows abundantly along this beautiful coastline, this charming restaurant is really remarkably good.

Under the guidance of Valencian Head Chef Miguel Lopez, Taste of Salia has become a custodian of modern Ibizan cuisine, with first-class produce procured locally or online in auctions from around the rest of Spain.

Chef Miguel proudly displays his cured sustainable tuna belly

On this occasion, Chef Miguel kindly created a bespoke degustation menu, and guided us proudly through his choice of dishes, illuminating each one with the provenance of the fine seasonal ingredients.

Almost every element on the menu is produced on-site and it is obvious from the start, attention to detail is the watchword at Taste of Salia.

From the freshly baked sourdough bread, made from Xeixa flour from the last mill in San Miguel, dipped in bioorganic olive oil from Ibiza, to the succulent black and green olives, marinated in-house in oil enriched with star anise, everything has a purpose.

And that purpose is to showcase the best this jewel of an island in the Mediterranean has to offer.

Even the ubiquitous and universally loved garlic dip, aioli, has been incorporated with salícornia, giving it a subtle and distinct flavour of its own.

For those of us more accustomed to the intense flavour of samphire from the Atlantic and North Sea, the local plant is surprisingly unsalty, despite its name sal (salt) y cornias (horns). We urge you to try nibbling a little while you are on a coastal walk along these shores to release its uniquely citrus flavour. However, I digress…

To whet our appetites for the feast to come, we were presented with a salty, sweet and smooth foie gras infused with the popular local aperitif Hierbas Ibicencas and topped with award-winning caviar produced by sturgeons in Teruel. A stunning start!

First, a meticulously diced and colourful representation of the classic Ibiza Salad. A fruity fresh combo of locally produced tomatoes, beetroot, avocado, and strawberries was drizzled with a lettuce sauce and topped with fine slices of ventresca jamón (cured sustainable tuna belly ham).

Chef Miguel’s dishes are occasionally influenced by his journeys through his beloved Mexico and he doesn’t hold back in introducing some heat where needed. A case in point, was the achingly pretty Crayfish Aguachile sat atop a spicy disk of jalapeño gel with sweet radish and a Mirin, lime and cucumber salsa all vying for our attention. A definite 10/10 for presentation and flavour.

The seafood kept coming, with a medley of quite possibly the finest crustaceans we’ve ever tasted.

Croquetas de Quisquilla (freshwater shrimp croquettes) each accompanied by a pair of the peeled, translucent freshwater shrimps, which had been marinaded in seawater, were utterly divine.

Miguel’s version of the traditional Sopa de Ajo (garlic soup) comprised an enormous scarlet Carabinero prawn from La Mancha, a salty seafood broth with a liquid egg yolk encased in pastry and a crispy bread stick topped with salmon eggs.

The chef must have pulled the next dish from out of his personal collection because it doesn't appear anywhere on the main menu. Strips of the tenderest possible Wagyu Picanya with olive oil, rosemary and Jack Daniels. Despite the crunchy fat strip on the outside it is impossible to imagine meat being so succulent and buttery inside.

Dessert duly came and maintained the same high standard, to the very last spoonful.

Peaches Poached in thyme and Hierba Luisa, served with fluffy Chantilly cream, red tea, green tea and cardamom.  

Proudly boasting ‘The Best Cheesecake Full-stop’, it was hard to argue. Made entirely from locally sourced ingredients, the key to the cake was deliciously smooth, semi-cured Ses Cabretes goat's cheese, integrated with white chocolate, on a toasted hazelnut and almond biscuit and topped with redcurrants. Widely considered to be one of Ibiza’s finest artisan products, it was the perfect representation of the philosophy at Taste of Salia.

There is so much to choose from on the Taste of Salia menu and you could take days to discover its many surprises. Besides, we haven’t even touched on the traditional seafood and paellas yet. (Spoiler: which are equally fantastic…)  

Genuinely, this restaurant needs to be on the bucket list of any discerning foodie who desires to experience the very best of Spanish cuisine, in a peaceful location and with beautiful views to match.

So, make sure you reserve a table and let yourself go as you work your way through your personal choice of dishes. We absolutely guarantee you won't be disappointed and, best of all, the prices are very reasonable to boot.

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