You don’t have to walk too many steps from Sóller‘s main square to find the small side street that’s been home to Casa Álvaro since it opened in spring 2013. It’s a little hidden away but worth seeking out if you’d like to enjoy some Spanish cuisine, particularly tapas, for lunch or dinner. Casa Álvaro is located in an old corner townhouse and your first sight of it will probably be the few tables on the cobbled terrace at the front.
The place takes its name from the owner/chef, Álvaro Monter, who’s originally from Barcelona but decided to open a restaurant on Mallorca after discovering the island while visiting a friend. His experience includes ten years working in Mexico, where he established two restaurants. He subsequently worked in restaurants in Madrid and in the UK, where he had originally intended to open Casa Álvaro.
There’s more than a touch of big-city cool to Casa Álvaro, which has a trendy interior décor, with a mix of conventional and tall tables, and a counter lit by suspended Edison-style vintage bulbs. If you’re a fan of old two-wheeled forms of transport, check out what’s hanging next to the wrought-iron staircase banister – one of a few quirky features that add character.
What to eat? The huge wall-mounted blackboard has details of the dishes on offer but there’s also a printed menu card. The latter shows dishes in sections with headings including ‘Volume of vegetables’, ‘% of Potatoes’, ‘Supplies of Croquettes’, ‘Torradas Shelving’, and ‘The Costs of the Sea’ – which reveal Álvaro’s intention to be a bit different.
From the menu we tried grilled vegetables, grilled prawns, foie gras with apple and onion, venison, a tasty duck confit cannelloni, rack of lamb, and ‘crema catalana’. The food presentation is modern and attractive and chef Álvaro is a warm and friendly person who clearly enjoys what he does.
Casa Álvaro has opened a little bar called Bruc alongside it, where you can enjoy a vermouth and tapas if you want something more informal.
The ambience at Casa Álvaro is pleasant; the food was fine and we’d recommend it if you’re in Sóller and fancy some tapas. Unfortunately we were not impressed by the condition of the ladies’ bathroom, which put something of a damper on our overall impression.