Marc Fosh, Palma Mallorca.

April 2018.

One of I think two Michelin starred restaurants on the island of Mallorca, this place in the middle of the city of Palma puts on a pretty high-class show. It’s on a narrow hard-to-access street in the old town, a simple glass doorway gives into a complicated set of multiple bright rooms, gathered around and looking up into space above where you can see the patios of the connected expensive hotel Convent de la Missio.

There’s a creatively modern brightly lit feeling to the rooms here, which started to fill up at the opening hour of 1 PM. A British table beside us was noisy sitting down, but the spacing of tables prevented offensiveness once they settled in. Waiter was a quick softly-spoken slight young guy with good English (and no doubt other languages) and a cheery professional attitude. Sommelier not quite as friendly and a bit standoffish but warmed up slightly when I convinced him I’d visited a bunch of producers.

We had a glass of white to start which was very nice so we ordered a bottle (Sa Cussa Antonia 2016, I can’t state the grapes but there are two or three obscure Mallorca ones), acidic but balanced with some fruit and an astringence. €38.

There are three fixed menus, a three-course (€29) or a five-course (€39) chosen from the first list of starters, mains, and dessert, and then a six-course lunch with no choices at €79. We did one each of the first two and had several nice treats. A creamy complex gazpacho containing mango with a very smooth piece of salmon in it was a winner. Rice prepared with fresh peas, asparagus, and truffles tasted of each of them individually and was sweet.

The mains were a roasted cauliflower which was perfect in consistency and had a focused cauliflower flavour, cod also perfectly prepared with Jerusalem artichokes and herbs, and a piece of roast pork with an almond crust (which I didn’t appreciate when I was eating it) benefited from a nice reduction. Deserts flavoured with chocolate and coffee were nicely presented.

The food was very good and the service polite and effective, but the physical plant stole the show: just gorgeous. With extra glasses of wine we ended up at around C$300, in spite of confining ourselves to relatively low-priced menu items and wine. This place is a beautiful breath of fresh air in a part of the world where heavy stone and beams along with very traditional food tend to predominate.

Food 9.2, service 9.0, ambience 9.5, value 8.4, peace and quiet 9.1. Well worth it if you’re in town and don’t mind spending a bit of dough on lunch.

About John Sloan

John Sloan is a senior academic physician in the Department of Family Practice at the University of British Columbia, and has spent most of his 40 years' practice caring for the frail elderly in Vancouver. He is the author of "A Bitter Pill: How the Medical System is Failing the Elderly", published in 2009 by Greystone Books. His innovative primary care practice for the frail elderly has been adopted by Vancouver Coastal Health and is expanding. Dr. Sloan lectures throughout North America on care of the elderly.
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