Whenever someone says “great food” and a “secret spot” they immediately have my attention! I was invited to No11 by a friend and a colleague Vicki McLeod. I was going to try their food and she was going to give me a few tips on food photography. It sounded like a great plan!
So far, I have mostly reviewed places in Palma or nearby, but as the days are getting longer and warmer, I am hoping to venture further afield more often. Arriving at Port d’Andratx on a sunny February day, I was reminded of how gorgeous this former fishing village was in spite of all the developments of recent decades. I walked right to the end of the promenade, to No11, where a smiling Roberto greeted me like a friend and made me feel super welcome even before I said who I was and why I was there. Vicki arrived moments later and took me to their roof terrace, with a fantastic view of the whole bay. I made a mental note to come back here to try some of their signature cocktails one day at sunset.
Back to the restaurant and the food... I asked Roberto for a selection of his favourite tapas and pintxos. I often prefer to ask for recommendations, rather than picking things on the menu. My only request was to try their take on Pulpo a la Gallega (Galician style octopus), which I adore.
First, we tried a couple of bruschettas. Here they came in a form of thinly sliced bread, topped with quartered cherry tomatoes and mini mozzarella balls which - Roberto told us - came from his hometown of Andrea near Napoli. Then we were presented with a selection of pintxos that included some great flavours, colours and textures. There were two types of prawns; one fried in tempura, the other in Turkish kataifi dough. Both were large and full of flavour. Both were served with sweet chilli sauce. Roberto explained that this way of preparing prawns makes them crispy, while preserving their juices. Beef Carpaccio rolls filled with ricotta and sprinkled with parmigiano chips on top. This was probably my favourite dish of the day; I loved the combination of raw meat and cold fresh ricotta. Pulpo a la Gallega, was served as a pinxo: a thin slice of bread, topped with tiny slices of roast potato and slivers of grilled octopus, coloured with paprika. It was very moreish, even though it was getting cold, by the time we took all the photos we wanted. We also tried some very good vitello tonnato (veal with tuna mayonnaise sauce), typical of the Italian region of Piamonte. Finally, we had a couple of croquetas, not to forget that we are in fact in Spain rather than Italy! Some were filled with champignones and salsa brava on top, others with mini mozzarella balls again, and all went down a treat.
I noticed an interesting theme when it came to food presentation here. Several tapas came garnished with drops of tandoori mayonnaise and little bits of watercress - their yellow and green colours alluding to spring we were all so eagerly waiting for!
As we were munching on this delightful spread in front of us, I was looking around the restaurant. Aside from the pretty sea view, I was also impressed with the interior, especially the corner with low tables and posters depicting some cool cocktails on the walls. I felt as if I was in a stylish friend’s living room.
For dessert, Roberto suggested we try Cannolo Siciliano, a crispy roll filled with cream ricotta and sprinkled with ground pistachios. It was, just like everything else, very tasty and nicely presented. A crunchy shell and a creamy centre of cannolo came with a cool addition of a few scattered raspberries and raspberry coulis decoration, all together generously sprinkled with icing sugar. To finish it all off, we had a couple of Italian style coffees. They serve Kimbo here, which is one of my favourites when it comes to the commercial coffee.
This was a perfect end to a very pleasant experience. I will definitely be back to Port d’Andratx soon, to try cocktails here, but also a very highly praised food at No11’s sister restaurant Verico!
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