After almost 12 weeks of lockdown here in Ibiza – including home cooking and all the washing up that goes along with it – it’s no surprise island residents are excited to get out of their houses and return to their favourite dining destinations in June. As the lockdown restrictions are slowly easing on the island, selected Ibiza restaurants have been given the green light to re-open, albeit with limited capacities and opening hours, plus strict safety and hygiene measures (but hey, that’s the new normal for now, so we’ll happily accept it!). Right now islanders currently have the enormous privilege of being able re-discover and experience the island’s gourmet scene as they reunite with their nearest and dearest, before the first wave of tourism arrives next month (which we’re also looking forward to!) and many go back to work. Below is part one of our two-part series focusing on dining out in Ibiza in June, from the old town and the island’s charming villages to the countryside and more – and don’t worry beach lovers, a guide to chiringuitos and seaside eateries is already in the works!
Set on a stunning hilltop in San José, Can Domingo and Mimí Pizza Bistrot are housed on separate terraces of a stunning traditional finca, offering two different spectrums of Italian dining. Can Domingo – which originally opened in the space in 2012 – serves up exquisite Italian fine dining on the front terrace and in the garden, created using the very best products either grown onsite in the permaculture garden, or flown in directly from the motherland, and has a dedicated vegetarian and vegan menu to appease all dietary requirements. Mimì Pizza Bistrot is set on the finca’s spacious back terrace, opened in 2018 as a more laid-back offshoot to the original brand, offering amazing pizza – both gourmet and traditional – plus tasty and accessibly priced Italian street food, all ideal for sharing and very family friendly. Open from Wednesday to Sunday, from 7pm until late, reservations are advised, especially for Saturday nights when the restaurant hosts live music nights in the garden.
In its short two-season history in Ibiza, Bottega Il Buco has become a hotspot for island foodies, families and celebrities alike (you’d be surprised to know who’s been hibernating in Ibiza during lockdown!). In the heart of Santa Gertrdudis, the foccaceria style eatery – the first international outpost of NYC’s legendary Il Buco – is now open again from Monday to Saturday from 4pm until midnight, serving up its classic focaccia by the slice, plus a special à la carte Italian menu and a selection of amazing wine. You can also stock up on gourmet deli products to create your own picnic, if you’re heading the nearby beaches. Due to the limited seating capacity (combined with Bottega Il Buco’s popularity with residents, especially the Santa Gertrudis cognoscenti) at the moment, reservations are highly recommended.
The Passion Café empire created by Lana Love – with its original outpost opening in Playa d’en Bossa in 2002 – has got to be one of Ibiza’s most well-known and recognised brands. Right now, the Marina Ibiza and Santa Eulalia outposts remain open for islanders seeking healthy and happy cuisine, with food also available to takeaway, or for home delivery. Just prior to lockdown, Lana had been putting the finishing touches on her latest Passion location, a stylish, boho-inspired space that runs between Ibiza towns busiest two plazas, Vara de Rey and Plaza del Parque, with terrace seating on both sides. Good news for ‘townies’ and those popping in for essential post-lockdown shopping is that the new Passion opens its doors to residents on Friday June 5, 2020 – yes, tomorrow! Open for breakfast, lunch AND dinner, this looks set to be the flagship Passion destination for both islanders and holidaymakers alike (once the borders are open of course!).
With one of the most spacious alfresco dining terraces in Ibiza, surrounded by rich, fertile farmland and tall trees, Aubergine Ibiza is now open on Fridays and Saturdays for lunch from 12.30pm to 5pm, and dinner from 7.30pm to 11pm, then again for lunch on Sundays from 12.30 to 6pm. With a healthy, wholesome and seasonal menu made predominantly from produce plucked directly from the huerta onsite, or sourced from local farms and producers, the restaurant (part of the Atzaró Group) was one of the island’s farm-to-table pioneers and is the ideal place to connect with friends while nourishing yourself and falling in love with the campo landscape once more. With an ultra-relaxed vibe, a huge interior (perfect should the evenings get chilly), a gallery space showcasing the work of local artists (this month showcasing Simona Marziani’s ‘Up There In The Sky’ exhibition), it’s the ideal place for a large group gathering (up to 10 per table) or a romantic date alike.
The world may evolve, the island may change but one thing always remains the same – the sun always sets in the west! Ibiza is known around the world for its iconic sunsets, and right now, island locals have an exclusive front row view from the terrace and rocky coastline of La Torre Ibiza. The spacious restaurant re-opened its doors last month and immediately became a hotspot thanks to its exceptionally curated roster of Balearic resident DJs spinning the nightly soundtrack daily from 7pm, plus its affordable ‘winter’ pricing on food and drink. Reunite with your friends at a larger table on the terrace, or pull up a romantic pew for two on the tables dotted down the rocks towards the sea. Dishes include a selection of traditional tapas ideal for sharing, and hearty mains such as grilled octopus, a Black Angus burger, chunky lamb shanks and healthy salads. Reservations are essential as islanders vie for the prime sunset viewing spots before they have to share them with holidaymakers.
Never has a restaurant name sounded more apt, although when restaurateur Tito Piazza named his Ibiza restaurant Locals Only, his intention was originally to make citizens of the world feel at home. In June however, the restaurant is open to island locals only – until the lockdown restrictions ease and allow visitors onto our shores – and its central Plaza del Parque location in the heart of Ibiza town makes it the ideal place for a sunny terrace lunch from 12.30pm until 4.30pm, or an alfresco dinner beneath the stars between 8pm and midnight. Due to current health regulations, seating is limited so reservations are recommended so you don’t miss out on enjoying the carefully curated farm-to-table menu. Everything is sourced locally and sustainably where possible, with an Italian-influenced, Mediterranean flair, and is accessibly priced – perfect for locals in Ibiza!
There are famous restaurants in Ibiza, there are restaurants with iconic status and then, there’s La Paloma. Anyone who has ever stepped over its magical countryside threshold in San Lorenzo can attest to the love-at-first-sight affect it has on first-timers, and that’s before they’ve even gotten to the love-at-first-bite food. Set within a beautiful old finca and with tables spaced out on the gardens and farmland it lies on, La Paloma is the very epitome of rustic Ibiza chic. Dishes run from healthy to hearty, inspired by the family’s Italian and Middle Eastern heritages, with most of the produce grown onsite. As Ibiza slowly eases out of lockdown, La Paloma Café is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 12.30pm to 4.30pm for lunch only, and takeaway food is also available. Reservations necessary, as this is without a doubt one of the island locals’ most loved dining destinations. Paloma Restaurant, its fairy-lit night-time incarnation, will open very soon.
We often call it a hidden gem, but in reality, Tapas Ibiza is an Ibiza institution. Whether you’re a born and bred local, an expat, a regular visitor to the island or a seasonal worker, chances are someone in your circle has invited you to their favourite San Antonio hotspot to share tapas, sangria and cocktails on its charming terrace. As the de-escalation process continues in Ibiza this month, Tapas Ibiza is open from 1pm to 11pm from Wednesday through to Sunday, and are offering island residents a 25% discount throughout the entire month of June. The garden bar is also open just for drinks, while the restaurant serves up its newly tweaked 2020 menu made up of classic tapas, traditions with a twist and internationally-themed plates, with plenty of vegan and vegetarian options available.
One of the first restaurants to re-open its doors every year, Bambuddha was no different in Phase One of the de-escalation process. The incredibly spacious temple made it easy to accommodate tables with three metres space in between, and loyal customers from all over the island have been flocking to the iconic MediterrAsian restaurant since the moment it re-opened. Open seven nights a week, the special ‘MiSo Hungry’ all-you-can-eat menu on Tuesdays for 35€ (28€ if you hold a Bambuddha resident card) is a highlight – inspired by the famous Bambuddha buffet, but tailored to suit health regulations by being served to order rather than buffet style. On Sundays, it’s ‘Let the Good Times Roll’, with 40 pieces of Bambuddha’s famous sushi served Bento box style for 48€ (40€ with resident card), and on every day in between, it’s à la carte service. Open from 7.30pm until midnight, with the bar also open for drinks, reservations are recommended.