The Balearic Island of Mallorca, renowned for its stunning coastline, is one of Europe’s top holiday destinations. The enticing scenery and climate is complemented by an equally impressive gastronomic scene. Mallorca boasts many fine purveyors of paella, Spain’s famous national dish concocted from a mix of seafood, meat and distinctive saffron-flavored rice. Follow our guide for the ultimate paella experience on this delightfully laid-back island.
As famous for its spectacular views as for its paellas, Sa Foradada is located on Mallorca’s north coast opposite the Sa Foradada promontory. Part of its appeal lies in its seclusion; it is inaccessible to vehicles and can be reached only by boat or by a long hike up the hill. Meals are cooked over a wood fire in an open-air kitchen and served up in the similarly open-air terrace overlooking the bay. The menu features mixed (traditional) seafood and vegetable paellas in addition to a selection of meats, fish and salads. Punta de Sa Foradada, Carretera de Valldemosa, Deiá Km 6, Mallorca, Spain, +34 616 08 74 99
Restaurant, Mediterranean, $$$
Located on Mallorca’s north-east coast, Ponderosa Beach offers relaxed beachfront dining, complete with DJs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday and a selection of classic and innovative cocktails. The menu is based on a self-declared ‘0 km slow food concept’ and all ingredients are sourced locally with the highest regard for quality and ecological concerns. Numerous paellas feature on the menu, including a distinctive black paella prepared with squid ink.
Rumored to serve one of the best seafood paellas in Palma de Mallorca, Restaurante Ca’n Manolo is a low-key establishment specializing in Mediterranean and Mallorcan cuisine. It is a firm favorite, with diners coming here as much for the friendly, attentive service and value for money as for the superb seafood. Of particular note is the so-called ‘blind’ paella, where the seafood is served without shells. The tables fill up quickly in the evenings, so advance booking is advised. Restaurante Ca’n Manolo, Carrer Federico García Lorca 4, Palma de Mallorca, Mallorca, Spain, +34 971 91 25 91
Another top paella choice in Mallorca’s capital, diners at Sa Cranca can enjoy views of Palma’s bay and gothic cathedral while choosing from a selection of eleven different paellas, including meat, fish, vegetable and mixed varieties and an extensive seafood and fish menu. The restaurant features a large main dining room with two smaller adjacent rooms for private parties and a more intimate dining experience. A large selection of fifteen different paellas are also available for take-away. After dinner, be sure to enjoy a walk along the nearby seafront promenade.
A cozy venue with a prime location by the port of Alcúdia, Bodega d’es Port is a favorite local restaurant, especially around sunset with its impressive views over the sea. It a features rustic wooden interior and maritime-themed decor complete with vintage bullfight posters. The extensive menu offers numerous classic seafood and mixed paellas with exceptionally fresh ingredients in addition to tapas and local Mallorcan specialties such as pigeon casserole.