Sunshine, the ocean and pleasant temperatures all year round are not the only reasons to travel to Mallorca. The islands capital, beautiful Palma de Mallorca and the up-and-coming district of Santa Catalina are already reason enough you should go. The old harbor district to the west of the city has been gaining a reputation as a real foodie quarter. Unlike the rest of Palma, the roads here are arranged in a grid formation. Along those streets, you find restaurant after restaurant after restaurant, unassuming laid-back places with wooden tables, vintage chairs, and blackboards with chalked-up menus. One better after the other and perfect for a foodie trip any time of the year, but especially when it’s just a little too chilly to wear a Bikini anyway!
On my first visit in August two summers ago, we had dinner at Bunker. A place that didn’t look like anything at all from my online research, no Website, no Facebook, no Instagram. But the food! It blew my mind. Luigi Valdambrini’s creations like squid pasta, tuna tataki with fennel or even sorbets with ginger, basil and grappa ice-cream make my mouth water even thinking about it. It’s still hard to show you on pictures, you just have to take my word on this one.
Bunker, Carrer Soler, 07013 Palma de Mallorca
Named after Hawaiian surfer Duke Paoa Kahanamoku and founded by two friends, this place feels like a beach shack with a menu blends the very best of Asia, the Mediterranean and South America. Chef Ronny has a heavy Michelin starred background and mixes Greek Lamb Kebabs with Baja Style Vegan Mexican Tacos.
Duke, Carrer Soler, 36, 07013 Palma de Mallorca
3. EL AQUANAUTA
Best tacos I’ve had outside of Mexico. And California! We were six people here for dinner, lucky enough to be able to order the whole menu up and down and try every single dish on the menu. They’re fantastic! So are the drinks. And the dudes!
El Aquanauta, Avenida Argentina 27, 07013 Palma de Mallorca
4. TAST CLUB
Even though not located in Santa Catalina, Tast Club is worth to mention. This place may be a bit more elegant but it still has a cozy atmosphere. It reminds of an old English club. There are tapas and an excellent Raw Bar with tartars and ceviches. Also delicious razor shells, mussels, octopus with Kimchee and scallops. You’ll also find more classic dishes on the menu, like burgers, Beef Stroganoff or Entrecôte. Don’t forget to leave space for a slice of Tarte Tatin at the end!
Tast Club, Carrer de Sant Jaume6, 07012 Palma de Mallorca
For the best fish, you should definitely come to Emilio. The quality of the food surprises me every time! Everything is fresh, so fresh that most dishes are served raw like sashimi of salmon, tuna and mahi-mahi, tartar of tuna or salmon with caviar, fish or lobster ceviche or different tatakis. Make sure to book a table in advance!
Emilio Innobar, Calle Concepcion Nr. 9, 07012 Palma de Mallorca
Modern grey and white interior, this place is not to miss when it comes to the food. Not only does it look absolutely beautiful on the plate but the ex-Nobu Chef cooks up Japanese and Thai classics with Mallorcan classics that are to die for: Sea Bass Thai Sashimi, Crisp oven roasted suckling Iberian pork leg or miso Honey roasted Aubergine.
Nuru Restaurant, Calle Annibal, 11 Santa Catalina, 07013 Palma de Mallorca
7. NAAN STREET FOOD
When I’m asked what my favorite food is I always find it hard to decide. I am obviously obsessed with Tacos, love Shakshuka, could slurp Ramen every day and don’t want to go to bed at night without having eaten a proper Austrian Schnitzel. Kidding aside, at Naan Street Food, the incredibly talented chef combines all of the worlds best flavors, reinterprets them and comes up with one highlight after the other. What usually is just bread on a plate “Pan Naan” is served with roasted almonds, coriander, tzatziki, and corn humus. Make sure you order this right away! There’s delicious “Cauliflower Ras El Hanout” served with Tahini, “Tacos de Pescado Naan” that are some of the best tacos I’ve had in forever – so definitely order the big portion! Try to leave space for the main course, because the Lobster roll here is insanely delicious and so are the ribs with homemade BBQ sauce! Mmmmhh wow OK, I’m booking my flight back to Palma right now!
Naan Street Food, Calle Caro 16, 07013 Palma De Mallorca
Pictures: Duke, El Aquanauta, Nuru, Emilios, Tast Club, Naan Street Food