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-   -   Satyricon (restaurant review, September 2011) (https://www.forum.puertopollensa.com/alcudia/8008-satyricon-restaurant-review-september-2011-a.html)

Harters 12-09-2011 12:10

Satyricon (restaurant review, September 2011)
We’d put this on our “maybe” list after reading about it on SkyBlue Mallorca and a couple of foody websites. So we went to have a nosy at the menu and thought “Cor blimey, that looks interesting”. Certainly imaginative and a bit fusion. It was now on the definite list.

Probably nothing quite prepares you for the room at Satyricon. It’s an old theatre or cinema and has been “done out” in a faux Roam style style – all mosaic floors and “antique” frescoes o the wall. It really is an overblown tart of a place. I can’t think of anywhere else where there’s a constant procession of folk wandering in (and I mean right in) gawping round the room, weighing up the diners, taking a photograph and wandering off. And all without comment from the staff.

The menu reads a bit oddly – perhaps something gets lost in the English translation, but I suspect not – but , believe me, this is first class food, which eats much better than it reads. And you’d much rather have that than the other way round. As you might expect, there were a couple of freebies to get things underway. A red pepper “lollipop” – a ball of pepper stuffed with a pungent goats cheese. And some finely diced vegetable ( I forget what) in a tomato essence, topped with an anchovy – they provide a spoon for this.

A starter described as “sticky rice, crayfish and dashi broth” considerably undersold itself. The sticky rice suggested a nod towards east Asia but it seemed to be more a paella rice. Certainly cooked to perfection in a very flavoursome seafood stock. This was moulded into a rectangle and topped with a strip of jelly made from the dashi. On top, a couple of poached crayfish – the sweet meat melting in the mouth. This was superb, both in concept and execution.

There was also a fusiony feel to the other starter. A very substantial portion of red tuna which had been marinated for 24 hours in something slightly citrussy and this provided the only “cooking” As a sauce, an entirely Spanish almond based ajo blanco sauce, dotted with olives. With the benefit of hindsight and Google, I regret ordering the dish – I try to be environmentally aware about things I eat and hadn’t realised the Mediterranean red tuna is becoming an endangered species due to overfishing.

There was fish also in one of the main courses. Three small fillets of John Dory sat, artfully, on a puree of root vegetables, surrounded by a tomatoey vinaigrette and dotted with bits of samphire. It not only looked really good, it tasted really good. Very clever cooking.

The other plate was boneless leg of suckling lamb, cooked for 24 hours at 60 degrees. In itself, absolutely delicious. And its flavours enhanced by an earthy chickpea puree and an interesting combination of local Sa Pobla cabbage bound together with a thin potato puree forming the sauce.

Desserts were as interesting as they were intricate. Works of art on a plate. First up, a white chocolate mousse, topped with a lychee flavoured cream. Surrounding it a few whole lychees, orange segments and orange juice. I’m not sure why I ordered this, except I didn’t much fancy any of the others. I’m certainly not a fan of white chocolate. It’s usually just sickly sweet, but not here. And any leanings towards the overly sweet were cut by the lychees and orange. I surprised myself by really enjoying it.

Across the table, life’s companion was seeing off a concoction of perfectly ripe strawberries. There was an accompanying liquorice custard, in which liquorice couldn’t really be tasted. And topped with shards of a grappa flavoured water ice – although the flavour of grappa was about as absent as the liquorice. Even so, it was really nice – but, effectively just posh strawberries and cream. There was very good coffee to finish.

It probably goes without saying that prices here are high – starters often approaching €20 and main courses in the mid-20s. Whilst the main course prices didn’t seem out of the way in comparison with similar quality city centre in Europe, they seemed aspirational for a holiday area (although most of the other diners appeared to be Spanish, rather north European tourists). Starters certainly seemed a couple of Euros or so out of kilter with “good value”.

But, all in all, this was a really good evening. Apart from the gawpers who got right up my nose.

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