These are not easy times for the world of leisure and catering. Faced with a situation as difficult as the one that has generated the arrival of the COVID-19 virus, there are many restaurants that have not resisted the pull. Others, however, have reinvented themselves or continue to struggle with an offer based on a very local product, of proximity and a very close service, of course, being able to cover many fewer tables and diners. This is the case of Café Med where Peter Toth is the owner, chef, sommelier and head of the room of this small place located in the town of Fornalutx. How is it possible? Well, with few tables, small groups and a closed menu that changes every day.
Café Med's proposal is based on the Mediterranean, with much product from its own garden and with many seasonal dishes. During my visit I was able to try a tasting menu consisting of six passes that started with a Mallorcan cor de bou tomato salad and broçat ice cream, a fresh dish in perfect harmony with the green gazpacho and tuna tartar that followed. If the products from the chef's own garden are part of the DNA of his kitchen, it is no less so the selection of wines that he offers in his collection but well chosen menu. These first two passes were accompanied by a fantastic Acopinyat, a blanc de noirs from the Dalt Turó project based on grapes of the callet variety.
Green gazpacho with bonito tartar.
The three central passes were a conjunction of very special flavors and a combination of very well chosen products. Simple but very well cooked preparations. The first of them was a wild sea bass accompanied by white zucchini spaghetti, followed by rabbit Dim Sum with white onion puree. None of these dishes represents excessively complicated elaborations but their cooking is very careful, in this case, fundamental in the corvina.
Rabbit dim sum with white onion puree.
Likewise, the combination of flavors and textures of the Dim Sum show a wide knowledge of the product by the chef. A blend of black mantle and merlot by winemaker Tomeu Llabrés and named Pinup by Celler Ca'n Verdura de Binissalem, was an extraordinary pairing for a picaña of veal accompanied by aubergine puree and red pepper cannelloni, which literally made it tears will come to my eyes. It is true that the quality, flavor and cooking of the meat did not require any accompaniment. Despite everything, the memories of the earth and the orchard of the aubergine and the pepper made the pairing even more round if possible with a wine whose nuances of vanilla and clove highlighted the whole in an extraordinary way.
Galician picaña, aubergine puree and red pepper cannelloni.
The final corollary could not have a better title, "A walk through the Tramontana." In this way, the chef presents a dessert made from almond gató, white peaches from Sóller and carob ice cream. Without a doubt, the final experience was more of a trip than a walk, a trip that could perfectly be reflected in the descriptions of that rural gastronomy of Archduke Luis Salvador in his work Die Balearen and of which we Mallorcan are so proud.
A walk through the Tramuntana. Gató almond, white peaches from Sóller and carob ice cream.
Luis G. Turell Coll