Inca-born chef Andreu Genestra has been in the media spotlight since the restaurant that bears his name, near Capdepera, first gained its Michelin star. Andreu since opened this his second restaurant. Aromata is a hot tip for a weekday lunch in town and it’s always buzzing with customers in the middle of the day.
You’ll find Aromata within Sa Nostra Cultural Centre, only a few minutes’ walk from Jaime III and the Borne. The roofed-in former courtyard combines original architectural features – including stone arches, cobbled floor, marble columns, and a handsome stone staircase – with contemporary furniture and lighting, and an indoor vertical ‘garden’. But it’s the cuisine that’s the main attraction.
Aromata offers a weekly-changing weekday ‘menú del día’ Aromata Migdia: three courses (with choices), including bread (oil and olives are for a small additional charge), a glass of wine, water, or beer, for an accessible price. The Aromata Gourmet version begins with an ‘amuse bouche’, and offers a set starter, main course, and choice of sweet dessert or cheese plate. It too includes, bread and glass of wine, water, or beer. Andreu believes the quality/price ratio is one of the best in Palma.
The cuisine is what he calls “the essence of Mallorca”. The chef felt there was a lack of restaurants in the capital serving good-quality food with traditional Mallorcan flavours and, knowing that visitors too are increasingly looking for authentic cuisine, he created Aromata.
Aromata – unlike his Andreu Genestra restaurant near Capdepera – is open all year. His recipes for Aromata often include his favourite spices – many brought back from his winter visits to places such as India. Examples include carefully sourced high-quality spices, including cloves, cinnamon, and black pepper – ingredients of Sa Pobla’s traditional dish ‘arròs brut’.
For our review, the two of us tried the day’s midday menu, beginning with a ‘coca‘ Caprese with a rocket foam (the ‘coca’ here is always worth trying) and garlic shrimps with a chilli pepper ‘air’; the latter had particular visual appeal, with its colours a contrast to the attractive white bowl in which it was served.
The two main courses were: grilled salmon with a stew of green peas and fennel sauce, and sliced pork fillet with a sauce of sobrassada and honey, on a bed of rice. The pork was cooked slightly pink (favoured by an increasing number of chefs these days), and the sobrassada added a delicious local note to the dish.
We ended our lunch with a marbled almond cake with ice cream (nicely flecked with vanilla), and ‘crema Catalana’ – preferring the first of these two desserts. The Aromata Migdia pudding options usually include their plain yogurt with fruit, for those with a less-sweet tooth.For dinner, Aromata offers two set menus: Menu Aromata (four courses plus amuse bouche and petits fours) and Menu Sentits (six courses plus amuse bouche and petits fours). If you prefer fewer courses for dinner, you can choose any dishes from these menus (each is priced for a full portion).
Some Andreu Genestra-branded products are worth trying while at Aromata: gin, wines, and oil. We enjoyed the oil, made from picual, arbequina and empeltre olives from the estate surrounding his Michelin-starred restaurant. His red, white, and ‘rosado’ wines are produced by winery Armero i Adrover in Felanitx.
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