Have you ever tried smoked salmon with blueberries? I have, the other day. In Magalluf, no less!
Anyone who lives in Mallorca, and most people who visit it more than once, have an idea of this neighbourhood as being a “party central” of Mallorca. This may still be true, but I have been living in the area for two summers now and I can assure you that there are some calmer and classier winds blowing in the area.
A case in point is Karibu Beach – a fresh incarnation of the renowned El Ultimo Paraiso Beach Club – where smiley young people welcome you to their new home and make sure you enjoy their familial, relaxed vibe - be it in the restaurant, the chill out area or by the pool. I went there with a fellow Mallorca Bulletin writer Amanda Jeffrey, who made a documentary about the misconceptions of Magaluf, and welcomed an opportunity to try a new restaurant in the area.
We started our experience with some light and fresh José Pariente verdejo and mixed tempura vegetables. The selection included asparagus, broccoli, zucchini, spring onions, and even mushrooms with cheddar cheese. The tempura was light and crunchy and I loved the black salt seasoning. Karibu's friendly and incredibly modest chef Arcadio Pérez came out at one point to greet us and explained a pretty complicated technique involved in encapsulating cheese in tempura without it melting. I did not expect this level of cuisine in Magaluf, amongst all the English Breakfasts and frozen seafood, but this was the first of many surprises.
Our next plate included smoked salmon with blueberries sauce - surprising, but incredibly delicious! – and crunchy prawns deep fried in angel hair pasta and served with slightly spicy mayonnaise based sauce, whose exact name escaped me. Next we had Ensalada Caprese, a creamy burrata salad, with large, juicy tomato slices, green pesto and basil leaves. The surprise here was slivers of toasted almonds which perfectly contrasted that soft burrata and those tangy tomatoes, while giving a nod to local treasure that are almonds. I loved this place more and more with every new plate that came out of Arcadio's kitchen!
For our main we tried one of their Arroces de la casa, with big juicy prawns. When I began living in Mallorca I was forever chasing “the best paella on the island”, but over the years I have learnt to love arroz - a thinner, drier and crispier version of this dish. Arroz at Karibu was sensationally tasty! Amanda and I scraped every last grain of rice from the paellera it was served in and promised each other to come back to try a different one.
Never ones to miss out on desserts, we tried two - each as delicious as the other. Tocinillo de cielo, meaning “sky bacon”, which got its name thanks to its appearance and colour, similar to pork bacon. It is made with egg yolks, sugar and water, and covered in caramel sauce. You have to try it to appreciate how tasty it is, despite the simplest of ingredients! Their Flan de queso, a Mallorcan version of cheesecake, was also super moreish.
Some of the plates we have tried are not on Karibu's standard menu; the chef gets inspired and creates different dishes daily… You can always ask for something even if you don't see it on the menu. If you come to the area by boat, as more and more people do every summer judging by the increasing number of boats here, they also offer a tender service - either delivering to the boat or picking up the clients to dine on their spacious terrace with the view of the whole of Magalluf bay.
Whatever else might be “trending” on our little rock, Magalluf is definitely one area you should revisit with an open mind. I promise you that – if Karibu is to go by – you will be pleasantly surprised!
C/Martín Ros García, 18A, Torrenova
Tel: 722 50 13 54
Starters from 11€ Salads from 14€ Rices from 20€ Desserts from 6€