The foundations of Antía Pagant and Matias Romano’s relationship have always been built on food. The creative pair met while eating pizza in New York, where at the time, Antía was working as a fashion photographer and Matias was head chef at a restaurant in Brooklyn. It was a chance rendezvous that blossomed into a love story and a subsequent gastronomic journey that led them around the world. Eventually, they landed on the white isle, initially opening a spot in Siesta and most recently launching Hämbre, an Ibiza restaurant focused on collaboration, connection and creativity.
Hämbre has created quite the buzz in the centre of Santa Eulalia since opening its doors. A 70s-inspired space that centres on vintage decor, mood lighting and antique tiles hand-picked by Antía, the Ibiza restaurant boasts both indoor and outdoor space that hums along to the sounds of funky playlists complied by Matias. Laid-back and romantic, the pair have gone to great lengths to ensure that the atmosphere is perfect and reflective of the kind of places they themselves like to eat at. But above all, it’s designed as a stage for the ever-evolving dishes on parade.
Changing every three days, the Ibiza restaurant’s menu is in constant flux depending on availability of ingredients. It’s a culinary collaboration between Matias and fellow chefs Miguel Lopez and Javier Vazquez, each with many years of experience. Every morning the trio start their day at the local market. Once back in the kitchen, they enthusiastically work on an internationally-inspired menu of around 12 plates — some Hämbre classics, others that will be complete one-offs, but always a selection that’s reflective of their collective, inimitable flair and deep respect for fresh, local produce.
Some celebrated favourites at Hämbre include mussels escabeche, made with three types of vinegar and served on sourdough toast with alioli, and vegan Caesar kale salad, made with vegetables delivered directly from a local farm. There’s always a raw fish option, as well as inventive plates featuring juicy Ibiza chicken or skate wing, another ingredient readily available on the island. What’s paramount is that every ingredient sourced for this Ibiza restaurant is sustainable. The same approach is taken with the predominantly natural wine list and the range of kombuchas, created by a local producer.
Once plated up, the dishes at Hämbre are delivered to tables with the same respect in which they’ve been created, with chefs explaining each element to diners and answering any questions about the dish. The team prides itself on delivering personal service, inviting collaboration with customers, and championing local producers. It’s an approach that sets them apart and brings people back to the Ibiza restaurant time and time again. Thank goodness for that shared slice of pizza all those years ago.