Pretty much everyone is aware of the Sunset Strip in San Antonio and rightly so. The popular bars of Café Mambo, Mint, Café del Mar, Savannah and Mambo Sushi on the short promenade are perfect spots to view the nightly performances of the dramatic Ibiza sunset whilst sipping cocktails and having some food. The problem though with places that are popular, is that they tend to get a tad busy. Parking just before the sunset is a nightmare, even with the extra parking spots introduced this season. Getting a table on any of the terraces can also be tricky without a reservation. Then, though all of the bars are super professional, once you’re seated with a prime view there’s always a wait that comes with queuing alongside 100s of other people craving frozen daiquiris.
There is a solution though for those who prefer to avoid the crowds, but still want THAT view of the sunset and THAT daiquiri.
Just a few hundred metres north along the coastline you’ll find the laid back area of Cala des Moro which has exactly the same sunset, albeit from a slightly different angle, and far less hustling and bustling. Head up the wooden steps by the promenade and you’ll then find Kasbah, an Ibiza institution that has been providing fresh quality food and drinks to ‘those in the know’ for the last couple of decades.
Kasbah opens from 11am till late so I can go at any point in the day, but I’ve been harping on about the sunset so much that it’s only right that I take advantage of the elevated terrace and comfy sofas to take a rare moment and watch one of nature’s little miracles unfold. It’s still stifling hot in Ibiza, but I’m on an elevated terrace, so I can let the welcome and consistent breeze waft pleasantly between my legs and get myself a frozen daiquiri while I ponder the extensive menu.
I’ve heard that the paella here is a bit special and manage to convince a diner at another table to go in with me as there is a 2 person minimum whenever paella is cooked from fresh. I also order a couple of the more interesting sounding tapas dishes from the dinner menu and sit back as the sun dips below the horizon in a kaleidoscope of warm colours. The sunset is possibly one of the best I’ve seen in Ibiza at this time of year and maybe that’s because of the viewpoint – in case you’d forgotten, I am on an elevated terrace.
As twilight hits, Kasbah is transformed as mellow lighting is switched on, candles are lit and the water in the bay starts reflecting the fading light from the sunset. Add some balearic beats courtesy of a live DJ and I’m thinking that this is actually pretty romantic as I make a mental note to try and bring an unlucky girl with me next time I visit. They even have a live saxophone player on occasion for extra romance, but I’ve managed to be a day late.
It’s now cooled down significantly from 35c to 34.9c, so time to stop with the frozen drinks and I order one of the mojitos as my tapas arrives. I’ve gone for the Teriyaki Steak Rolls and the Grilled Octopus Brochette. I start on the brochette which consists of skewers of peppers and octopus with a squid ink alioli – the idea of eating octopus isn’t for everyone and squid ink may not sound appealing, but if you’re a fan of calamari in batter then there’s no reason not to give this a try. It’s pretty amazing, soft and moist and packed with flavour and I kind of wished I’d ordered two of these, but then what sort of review would that be? On to the Teriyaki Steak which is basically thin slices of steak wrapped around vegetables with Japan’s favourite sauce drizzled over it. They’re basically spring rolls with steak instead of pastry, and they’re also amazing. The steak is tender, the vegetables crisp and the sauce refreshing without being over-bearing.
I’m now set for the paella, which I share with my neighbour. It’s pretty rare to find fresh paella outside of a dedicated Spanish fish restaurant, so I’m a little apprehensive but my contact wasn’t lying. This is special, up there with any paella I’ve ever eaten and my eating companion seems to agree. I don’t really need to say anymore, you’ll just have to try it for yourself.
It’s at times like this that I wish I was a cow and had more than one stomach, as my eyes keep spotting steaks and fresh fish coming out of the kitchen. I can’t stand the agony of not eating anymore of the wonderful looking food tonight, so go on my merry way thinking of possibly popping in tomorrow daytime. I’ll order a fresh smoothie and will have a crack at the breakfast and lunch menu, but first thing I’ll be looking into is the possibility of getting a trans-species operation done to fit it all in. Why didn’t I think of this years ago? Cow and donkey combo sounds like a winner.