At this time of year, a veil of magic descends across the entire island, and those fortunate enough to experience it find themselves in a dream-like trance, one they hope will never end. This is especially true at Aubergine Ibiza, a quintessential Balearic treasure that encapsulates all that’s authentically enchanting about this fair isle. Here, you pray that lunch lasts forever and dinner endures, because we all want time to stop in paradise. Set within the dusty surrounds of the fertile Santa Gertrudis countryside, Aubergine Ibiza is what’s classified as a bona fide gem. Cherished by locals and visitors alike, the restaurant is a symbol of all that’s great about the island – delicious food, effortless decor and fabulous company. Part of the much-revered Atzaró Group, it has country-chic style in abundance, yet it remains unassuming, laid-back and easy-going. Hours spent here seep away into the ether, while subconsciously setting up memories that last a lifetime.
The action centres around a traditional rustic finca and its dreamy alfresco terraces. Inside, whitewashed walls are accented by pastel green trim, dried local herbs are dotted about the room, and the odd comfy cushion is strewn here and there. Outside, the olive colour scheme continues with elegant iron furniture, alongside carefully crafted lampshades and an abundance of flora that covers the soft cement floor, climbs up wooden pillars and is potted on walls. It’s a masterpiece in subtle, calming design, a space that’s been created to ensure guests feel at home and stay for as long as they like. You’ll notice adults, kids and pets enjoying all it has to offer – everyone is welcome here. Naturally, the culinary offering is as aspirational as the setting. The majority of ingredients are plucked straight from the surrounding farmland, so Aubergine Ibiza has become one of the most well-known restaurants on the island for offering farm-to-table fare. The result is dishes that are full of earthy flavour and that hard to recreate home-cooked feel. Take the barbecue, for example. Squid with grilled potatoes, garlic and peppers, sea bass with spring onion and cherry tomato, and lamb chops with aubergine and honey all feature.
From the à la carte menu, try mouth-watering options including mini pizza with aubergine ceviche and tapenade, crispy borek – a spinach and feta cheese cheese pastry with tomato and black olive salad, or the restaurant’s signature dish, a classic sliced aubergine baked with parmesan. The restaurant is also famed for its hearty range of salads, so be sure to sample the pumpkin salad with feta cheese, dried tomatoes and pistachios or scallop salad with orange, red onion, avocado and a peanut, honey, lime and chilli vinaigrette in your order. Then it’s just a matter of choosing from the lengthy selection of Aubergine Ibiza specialities. Dishes like Turkish aubergine stuffed with beef, lamb, honey, creamy yoghurt sauce and tahini, quinoa risotto with the freshest farm veggies, mushrooms, parmesan and truffle oil, and bacon and the hearty Ibiza cheese Angus burger served with homemade fries are unabashed favourites. The biggest problem at Aubergine Ibiza? You’re simply spoilt for choice!
The enticement doesn’t end there, because Aubergine Ibiza also serves as a creative space as well as a culinary hub. There are exhibitions running throughout summer featuring artists including Simona Marziani and Hjordis Fogelberg Jensen, as well as famous Dutch hat designer, Anne Van Kettle. You can catch live music performances on Tuesdays, and every Sunday, the venue comes alive to the tune of music, art and a selection of irresistible bites. A meeting place, a dining destination steeped in local charm, Aubergine Ibiza has it all. Here’s to those spellbinding Ibiza days. Long may they continue.