Fired Up at Tomeu Restaurant

Meal #2: Tomeu Restaurant

Michelin Stars: 0

Day: 1

Total Star Count: 1

You know you’re in for a good night of eats when right off the bat it starts with a little fire! ;)

My first dinner in Palma was at Tomeu, a newly opened restaurant by Chef Tomeu Caldentey, the first Majorcan chef to be awarded with a Michelin star. This meal was a last-minute addition (read: hours’ notice) after I had an unforeseen schedule change. At the recommendation of Chef Maria Solivellas of Ca Na Toneta (stay tuned for that restaurant!) and with her help, I acquired a last minute reservation.

Chef Solivellas did not steer me wrong.

An eight-course tasting menu started off with some drama thanks to the bread course. Served next to the bread was sobrassada, made from imberico ham, which won “best bite of the day.” Sweet and savory (sweevory, if you will), this spread was good enough on its own, let alone on the beautifully baked bread. My waiter had to keep telling me to go light on the bread or else I wouldn’t finish my dinner. He was right. The meal to come would be large and in charge, but I regret nothing. After all, I knew I was walking back to my hotel.

Dinner started off rich with a course of foie gras and cantaloupe that was balanced and incredibly decadent. It was followed by another rich dish, a slow-cooked egg in a sauce that is considered a Mallorcan staple (they were way ahead of the sous-viding trend). Two courses in and I already was feeling full, but more drama awaited me.

Up next came the flamed langoustine — and I must say, I’m a sucker for table-side cooking. I love it. It’s fun, and fun is part of what I’m looking for in my dining experience. What can I say, I’m easily entertained. And clearly more easily entertained than the restaurant’s other patrons (who didn’t seem to turn a head, or bat an eye, when the fire erupted in the dining room) as my expression was no less than this:

The rich dishes kept coming, from a red mullet filet served with saffron mayonnaise (a first for me) to “Canneloni 2001” — Chef Tomeu’s signature dish, which has been on his menus since 2001 after public demand wouldn’t let him change up the ingredients from duck and mushroom. I can see why — it was damn delicious. Finally, I ended the marathon of savory dishes with the richest of them all — veal with a major slab of herbed butter to slowly melt, sauce and some truffle (natch).

I. Was. Done. I certainly consider myself a professional when it comes to tasting menus, but this is the richest I’ve ever had. The show wasn’t quite over yet, however, with a lemon ice and lemon meringue dessert that was so lemony and tart it was almost more of a palate cleanser than dessert. No complaints, as I personally love extra tart dishes and food, but it might not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Following dessert was second dessert (because duh) which was made of Mallorcan almond — a wafer with a sinfully creamy filling and almond ice cream on top. This is sure to be a crowd pleaser at the new restaurant.

On that note, which I sadly couldn’t finish (I was just too full), I stumbled out the door waving goodbye to the sweet wait staff who had attended to my every need so well the entire evening. I was drunk off delicious food. New restaurants usually take a few months for the kinks to be worked out, but Tomeu (at 2.5 months old) already has its sea legs. I can see why Chef Tomeu Caldentey is so revered in Mallorca and look forward to returning to the island and trying his other restaurants.