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Four volumes of SUITCASE Magazine, with a new issue delivered to your door each quarter
Set amid the windswept sand dunes of Es Cavallet, El Chiringuito has been high on the Ibiza hot list for almost a decade. Widely considered one of the island’s best restaurants, it’s a hub for relaxed seaside dining, though the threat of hedonism always lingers tantalisingly in the air – this is Ibiza, after all. Historically, it’s been a venue to enjoy by day but this year, El Chiringuito by night has been launched and sophisticated dining under a moonlit sky has been taken up a notch. The menu is French-focused with a hint of Morocco and portions are hearty – come hungry, bring a lover, and surrender to the romanticism.
A restaurant seamlessly interwoven with the cobbled streets of Dalt Vila – Ibiza’s old town – La Dispensa embodies all the charm of an old curiosity shop combined with a meandering menu to match. Staggered across many levels, each compartment is decorated with trinkets and collectables gathered from across the globe. Take a seat in one of the stylishly designed interior spaces or pick a spot on the alfresco terrace – both offer front row seats for admiring strolling passers-by and acrobatic street performers. Desserts here are a speciality, so tuck in – this is no time to be worrying about your waistline.
spots on the island. Inside, it’s a gothic affair with grandiose chandeliers and candlelight adding to the ambience, while outside the shimmering lights of nearby town, San Antonio, sparkle invitingly below. Cuisine is in-keeping with the setting – rich and exuberant, just remember not to get carried away drinking the restaurant’s homemade hierbas, otherwise you won’t remember it.
One for the meat lovers, this restaurant has been run by the same family for more than three decades. Simplicity is at its core – the most-loved dishes here are succulent cuts of meat cooked on the huge, specialist grill and the famed tomato salad, made of only three ingredients. The restaurant’s terrace is where the magic unfolds – twinkling fairy lights hang loosely from tree to tree, while stars glisten in the sky above – on a balmy Balearic night, it really is the dream. Worth noting it’s not the ideal spot for vegetarians, so only come here if their appetite for tomatoes is insatiable.
One of the oldest bars in Santa Gertrudis, Bar Costa is an Ibiza institution that in decades past served as a haven for the island’s artists and creatives. These days, you can still see their works hung nostalgically on the walls (reportedly swapped for dinners) but primarily it serves as a stop-off for a quick coffee and crusty bocadillo (sandwich) filled with traditional Spanish cheese, ham, or cured beef. Don’t leave before trying the local Serrano ham and make sure you pick a seat on the pavement – its location in the centre of the village makes it the perfect spot for people watching.
The only restaurant found in the tiny, idyllic cove of Cala Gracioneta on the west coast of Ibiza, El Chiringuito oozes effortless charm. By day, it’s a beach restaurant that hums to the sound of cocktail orders and chatter during long, lazy lunches; by night it transforms into a twinkly-lit romantic cove, where the lapping of waves and rustle of trees provide the dining soundtrack. The menu is beachside bliss – fresh fish is found alongside hearty paella, there are lots of vegetarian options. Be sure to ask for a seat on the tiered terrace to make the most of those famous sunset views.
Sergi Arola, the two Michelin-starred Spanish celebrity chef, has combined forces with Hotel Aguas de Ibiza to offer visiting foodies the chance to dine in true Ibiza style. Vi Cool is open from May to September when it features a tapas-style menu designed to share – opt for bravas or deep-fried prawns with curry and mint. The best bit? Guests enter via a separate entrance to hotel with a lift that shoots straight up to the rooftop and poolside view. V. cool indeed.
This sweet little café and bakery is the perfect spot for your morning coffee and breakfast; try their freshly baked bread, croissants and selection of sweet treats. It is a child-friendly zone, and definitely geared towards families – no strobe lights at breakfast. Founded in 2004, La Paloma is an excellent example of the versatility of Ibiza, the café being a far cry from clubbing central. They offer a great lunchtime menu, with delicious salads and sandwiches, and it is also good value for money. There is a lovely garden which transforms from a wild playground by day into an outdoor stage by night that hosts various musical wonders.
Regular Ibiza islanders will almost always mention Passion Café for a post-Pacha hangover cure. Here you’ll find one of the healthiest menus on the island made up of predominantly vegan, vegetarian and raw food for breakfast, lunch and dinner along with a selection of juices, superfood smoothies and elixirs. There are four locations on the island – in the Marina, at BFIT Ibiza Sports Club, Playa d’en Bossa and Santa Eulalia – but the seaview at Santa Eulalia makes it our favourite spot.
Bambuddha is like nothing you have experienced before, or will experience again. Once off the dirt-track road, their lights will guide you into a magical leafy covered sanctuary. The restaurant-cum-sex-shop consists of a cluster of wooden huts with bamboo shoots spurting between a selection of Buddhas – an ensemble making for a relaxed and mischievous environment. The food and cocktails are as lovingly created as the space that houses them; mixing Asian and Mediterranean cuisine, it is hard to go wrong on the food front. Try the tandoori octopus, yellow sea bass curry or order a plate of their delicious sushi. Although it will set you back a good few euros, any trip to the island would not be complete without time dedicated to this self-contained heaven. Booking is essential.
Profiting from Ibiza’s wildly fertile, terracotta-hued land, Aubergine is all about “farm to table”, meaning that the acres of land surrounding this laid-back, chic restaurant are used to cultivate ingredients that are then delivered straight to your plate. Unsurprisingly, the menu tips heavily towards the vegetarian scale, but there are a few dishes for those looking to dine on meat and fish. Always leave room for dessert – the chocolate brownie is to die for.
Set back from Cala Nova’s long stretch of fine, golden sand on Ibiza’s north coast is Aiyanna, the epitome of beachside, laid-back luxe. With an alfresco decking area that leads straight onto the beach, shade comes in the form of towering palm trees and the brightly-coloured, ethno-inspired parasols that have now become synonymous with the restaurant. There’s a health-conscious focus on the food front, with rainbow-hued dishes like green tabbouleh, and beetroot dolmades both featuring.
One of the many beach bars located on Playa d’en Bossa, Ibiza’s longest and potentially most lively beach, Beachouse stands out thanks to its chic, sandblasted decor and über-cool, hot, young crowd. It’s particularly buzzing at lunchtime, when families arrive with kids who spend the afternoon buzzing to and from the sea, but thanks to an exceptional menu of simple, authentic, Mediterranean fare, it’s popular at all times of day. Try the burrata – it’s a sensational, creamy dream.
Owned by stylish Dutch couple, Mirjam Leslie Pringle and Nicolaas Homan, the first outpost of Los Otros was opened in the sleepy village of San Juan, one of Ibiza’s northernmost villages. The pair designed the menu themselves off the back of Mirjam’s successful cookbook Veggie Very Much and it’s proved a roaring success, so much so there’s now a Los Otros Harbour in Santa Eulalia, so you can delight in delicious vegetarian and vegan fare by the sea.
If you’re craving sushi in Ibiza, the only place to seek out is Nagai. A restaurant steeped in Japanese style thanks to murals that adorn the walls of the traditional Spanish finca its set in. The Nagai kitchen is headed up by a Japanese chef who plied her trade with her father as a child before embarking on a professional career and training with some of the best sushi masters in the business. Only the finest ingredients are used on every plate – even if that means sourcing sushi rice from Japan – so the quality and flavours here are always exceptional.
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