MASIA SANT JAUME , BENISSA, 9652702 36/ 625297629
Heading for the top…
Situated high above Moraira looking towards the spectacular Peñon de Ifach is this newly opened restaurant run by the same family which runs the ever-popular El Chamizo in Moraira. Pedants will point to the fact that the restaurant is technically not in Moraira – it is in the coastal section of Benissa – and so that is the category in which we must place it.
The setting is marvellous, with a choice of seating either indoors or on the really spacious terrace area outside, with great views.
The eight of us failed to bring our swimming trunks, so missed out on the chance to have a dip in the pool. Those who tried the washrooms announced that they were definitely five star, but as we do not have a separate category for loos, we will leave that to one side…
The menu del dia, priced at €18, turned out to be a less-than-perfect way to showcase this lovely venue. The choice – from 3 starters and 3 mains, was limited and really did not do justice to what will surely turn into a very popular dining attraction. The food started with an amuse bouche of spinach croquettes – uninspiring but pleasant.
For starters we were split between those selecting a tasty and nourishing codfish casserole (potage de vigilia) and those who opted for the excellent Mozarella and tomato salad (ensalada caprese).
No-one chose the gazpacho, but the bread rolls were especially worthy of note, served with the usual choice of allioli or tomato concasse.
For mains (one meat course, one fish course and one vegetarian) most of us selected the grilled chicken – really tasty, and with the vegetables just on the right side of being al dente. Two of us chose the salmon plancha and pronounced it to be excellent. No-one ventured to try the espaguetti con calabacin …
For postres there were the usual choices including ice cream, fresh fruit and so on. As it was Good Friday most of us opted for the torrijas – A Spanish Easter treat similar to French toast and made with honey, served with cream rich in cinnamon.
There was a good wine selection on offer and our host chose the verdejo known as Cyatho at €12.50 a bottle, and a rather pleasant red – Marques de Griňon at €19.50. Service throughout reflected the fact that this was a very busy time of the year, and no doubt things are still settling in after having opened as recently as the end of March. In other words, service was a bit slow, resulting in meals not being as hot and fresh as they might have been. We would expect this sort of wrinkle to be ironed out as the weeks go by, and the general consensus was that this was exactly the sort of place we would happily come back to with our partners, on a fine summer’s evening.
Cost p.p. €31.85
MR 72 Visit the website for the restaurant here