With an innovative menu by chef Massimo Larosa, the food at Amalur is almost too beautiful to eat.
On the road between Ibiza town and Santa Gertrudis you’ll find the sea-blue walls of the finca-cum-restaurant Amalur. With four decades of history on the island, the restaurant has become synonymous with quality, style and good taste.
In 2021, Amalur began its latest chapter under the ownership of renowned-restaurateur Francesco Manzoli, whose previous gourmet ventures include Can Carlos and Can Carlitos, both on Formentera. With head chef Massimo Larosa completing the new line-up, Amalur reopened in the autumn and continues its legacy of innovative cooking with a distinctly Italian twist, with dishes made using local produce.
“Our menu is fully inspired by a Mediterranean style with evident, deep Italian influence,” says Francesco. “We constantly work on improvement testing and consider new possibilities and techniques everyday, always respecting food seasonality. Some of our most popular dishes are classic Italian family recipes, infused with ideas from the Balearics.”
Massimo can trace his love of Mediterranean flavours back to the kitchens of his mother and grandmother. Today, this traditional foundation combines with his innovative palate to produce artfully presented dishes that look (almost) too good to eat.
Before stepping up to the plate in the Amalur kitchen, Massimo worked at the Michelin-starred San Domenico in northern Italy, and Arzak and El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain.
To ensure Amalur’s offering remains as authentic as possible, Francesco sought out talent with specific experience in Ibiza. Accordingly, Massimo’s menu comprises creative seafood dishes made with fish caught off the island’s coasts (don’t miss the signature seabass toast with caviar); farm-to-table vegetarian and vegan dishes using produce grown on site; fresh pasta, made daily; and delicately plated edible flowers. Amalur offers more than just a meal: it’s a true culinary experience.
At the bar, mixologist Roberto Rossi oversees the cocktail menu. Shelves are lined with fresh and preserved ingredients, homemade tinctures and elegant spirits. There’s also an impressive array of fine wines, high-quality sherry, Italian dessert wines and champagnes to satisfy the most discerning drinker. The house interpretation on a Bloody Mary for example, surprises with its sunshine colour: yellow tomatoes, lemon and spices are shaken with vodka. Espresso martinis have a hint of cacao and, for something refreshing, try the mezcal soda with its white pepper and coconut water infusion.
With such a reputation for epicurean excellence, it’s fitting that Amalur is situated just outside the quaint village of Santa Gertrudis – known as the island’s culinary capital. “Fortunately, Santa Gertrudis is a very central location, even more so in recent years as the island has developed as a global outpost, with an ever-higher number of foreigners permanently settling here,” explains Francesco. “It’s quite easy to understand how these changes have allowed the town to become a true international borough, one where visitors can experience a multicultural atmosphere.”
We constantly work on improvement testing and consider new possibilities and techniques everyday, always respecting food seasonality. Some of our most popular dishes are classic Italian family recipes, infused with ideas from the Balearics.
- Francesco Manzoli, Chef
Francesco has chosen to keep Amalur open throughout the year and is therefore one of a minority of Ibizan establishments that welcomes guests every season.
This year will be Francesco’s first summer in Ibiza. “In my opinion, the winter is when relationships between local and foreign residents are consolidated. Its this connection with people who stay beyond the busier summer months that define Amalur and its place on the island.
Francesco, like many Ibizan residents, finds that the island has a uniquely alluring atmosphere. “It’s the energy of the people who live here and the mood they live in,” he explains. “Working here can be really challenging, but very rewarding.”