With over three decades honing his considerable culinary skills on Mallorca, there are few chefs who have amassed more accolades and acclaim through the years than Gerhard Schwaiger. During this time he even achieved the dizzy heights of a double Michelin star for his work at Tristán in Puerto Portals. Opened in 2014, the German chef’s eponymous restaurant opened its doors in a somewhat less glitzy milieu…but does the veteran still have the magic touch in the kitchen?
Located just outside Palma’s motorway ring-road next to the Son Moix football stadium, Son Rapinya isn’t exactly the kind of neighbourhood you would think of finding one of the city’s finest restaurants. You also wouldn’t expect to have to take a lift through a commercial centre, passing a supermarket, to get there. However, once the doors slide open and you step out, the wisdom behind its position certainly becomes far more apparent.
There is an immediate sensation of detachment upon arrival at the ‘penthouse’ level of the Son Roix building, a feeling of calm while looking out over the Mallorcan capital in one direction, and the lush mountainous horizon in the other. A sunny alfresco terrace makes the most of these views, and a pleasant spot for pre- or post-meal drinks. Inside the vibe is smart yet casual, starburst bronze lighting, polished concrete floors, blond wood furnishings combine with colourful contemporary artworks for a modern, understated look.
Once sat we are first presented with sourdough bread, homemade and comfortingly warm and accompanied by, flavour of the moment, kimchi mayo, plus some wonderful sweet olives. A winning combination and promising opener. Our tasting menu then began in earnest with hamachi tartar, complemented by cauliflower – perfectly al dente – seaweed and sesame adding Asiatic notes, and a picante finish. An impressive appetiser.
Next potato parfait was topped with beetroot and smoked fish, all tied together with a chive salsa. It was delicate and delicious, and left you wanting more. And the centrepiece of the meal certainly did not disappoint. A whole turbot baked in a salt-crust cocoon was brought to the table, cracked open, expertly filleted, and plated upon saffron pasta. A spiral of tomato pesto dressed the plate beautifully, while a small copper saucepan of beurre blanc raised the dish to sublime. A dessert of raspberry curd with vanilla ice cream, hot raspberry coulis and dark chocolate soil. The swoonful combination of creamy, sweet, and tart provided fabulous closure.
As well as a regularly updated tasting menu, the restaurant offers a daily-changing lunch menu, and an impressive a la carte offering, with Gerhard Schwaiger very much at the helm. This, together with our delightful lunch of world-class Mediterranean cuisine, was all evidence of a chef still at the top of his game.
Why eat here?
Top-quality Mediterranean dining in unpretentious surrounds with mountain views.
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