Cova Negra, Capdepera
2019, Aug 5th
Located in a former convent in the hilltop town of Capdepera, Cova Negra is chef Pablo Tamarit’s own restaurant – an exciting addition to the gastronomic offering of Mallorca’s northeast.
When Valencian chef Pablo Tamarit left Can Simoneta hotel in Canyamel, it was to open his own restaurant in Capdepera. Cova Negra is located within the Hotel Creu de Tau, which opened this spring, but is a separate business with its own entrance from the street (with adjacent large car park for hotel and restaurant clients).
The décor is exceptional: the building is a high-quality renovation of the former convent, and many original architectural features have been restored and retained. The smart bar reveals its history as the convent’s former chapel; have a drink here or on the bar’s terrace.
The most striking features of the dining room are the gothic arches and large windows with views out to the hills. It’s a large room, with plenty of space between tables; for even more privacy, there’s a private dining room. The restaurant extends onto a large covered terrace, where you eat at cloth-covered tables with beautiful long views.
But Cova Negra isn’t all about good looks and an interesting backstory. Pablo studied business before he began his culinary studies – useful for a restaurant patron. His culinary experience has included working with top chefs in Valencia and Madrid and he also worked in Lima, Peru at Astrid & Gastón – often cited as the best restaurant in Latin America.
Cova Negra has a Mediterranean concept at lunchtime, with an à la carte menu of starters, grilled dishes and, of course, paellas. The dinner concept is gastronomic with a very tempting à la carte menu, including a starter of lobster four ways, fish of the day, and Rossini tenderloin of Simmental beef.
Spoilt for choice by too many tempting dishes, we opted for the tasting menu (65 €): seven dishes showcasing Pablo Tamarit’s culinary techniques and creativity. This menu can be accompanied by sommelier and front-of-house manager Ildara Bajo’s wine pairing for 45 € (I was driving, so it was water for me!).
To start, we had two types of bread (rye and herbed focaccia), truffled beetroot butter, salt, and Aubocassa extra virgin olive oil. Every dish was explained at the table by a member of the serving staff, who were efficient and pleasant.
Our first experience of eating at Cova Negra will not be our last!
Photos: JAN EDWARDS
Prices correct at time of writing.