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Balearic Beach Dining Chiringuito Blue, Ibiza
October 29, 2018
There are a lot of beach bars and restaurants in Ibiza, but very few match the cool, sophisticated vibe of Chiringuito Blue.
We’re taken to a table in a far corner of the open sided terrace, right at the front, with low deck-chair style seats — the golden sand is within touching distance, the sea breeze blowing gently across our cheeks, prettily fluttering the fabric draped ceiling and rippling the sunlight like water over the wooden floors. It’s lunchtime on a clear, sunny day and the beach is busy, but it feels as serene as a private island.
It helps that from where we’re sitting — in fact, from all of the restaurant’s tables — we can’t see the holiday complexes of Santa Eulària des Riu. The town is known as one of the island’s quieter, family-orientated destinations, and the beach is smoke-free, but it still does cater for package holidays and unfortunately, lacks the pretty, pastel-coloured architecture of villages such as Santa Gertrudis. Nevertheless, Chiringuito Blue has done very well. It’s effortlessly chic, instantly relaxing.
The menu is the work of award-winning Israeli chef Haim Cohen and blends Middle Eastern cuisine with Mediterranean favourites. There are sharing plates, huge salads and main dishes largely favouring seafood. We start with appertivos — we are in Ibiza, after all. The Bloody Micaela (the island’s version of a Bloody Mary) is one of the best I’ve ever tasted; a refreshing cocktail of Ketel One vodka, lemon and tomato juice with hot oriental spices. It’s unbelievably refreshing with an exhilarating kick that makes my dining partner wrinkle his nose, but to me, it’s perfection.
The service is erring slightly on too casual; it takes us a while to signal someone over to replenish our drinks and take our food order, but the plates arrive very quickly. A gorgeously vibrant tomato and avocado salad with oregano is first to the table along with a bowl of lightly salted Padrón peppers and warm chickpeas with tahini. It’s all very fresh and wholesome — an ideal balance to the Andalusian crispy calamari, which is delicious and well-cooked overall, but a few of the pieces are slightly over fried and tough to chew. The grilled octopus with homemade aioli, on the other hand, is beautifully tender, paired nicely with a side of sautéed spinach with roasted garlic and lemon.
As we’re picking at a rich chocolate tartlet with homemade olive oil ice cream (beautifully refreshing and subtly flavoured), a large salt crusted fish — the catch of the day — arrives at the neighbouring table, and we both agree that we’ll have to return to try that too. And the breakfast menu, for indulgent dishes such as fried eggs with caviar and fried potatoes.
When we stand to leave, our waiter makes a quick signal to tell the valet that we’re ready for our car. He’s waiting for us when we turn the corner, keys in hand with two bottles of complimentary ice cold water. It’s a simple, but welcome touch. Seamless, like luxury should be.
For more information on Chiringuito Blue Ibiza, see here.
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