The Balearic Islands lie off the coast of Spain in the Mediterranean; there are several islands, but the 3 most well known are Menorca, Ibiza and Mallorca. I had the pleasure of attending a recent dinner introduction to Mallorca, sponsored by the Counsel of Mallorca..
Held at the Whyte Hotel in Brooklyn, 70 invited guests saw a video presentation of the island, hand out information, 3 Mallorcan wines and a very nice dinner prepared by 2 chefs flown in especially for this event. The event began as a rooftop cocktail hour and then moved to the main hall.
Mallorca hosted over 40,000 American tours last year and hope to increase that number by making Americans aware of what the island has to offer.
First, the good news: the dinner prepared by ChefsMaria Solivellas and Miguel Gelabert from Mallorca was outstanding, both from the presentation and the typicity of the local cuisine. What’s not to like about this menu:
hors d’oeuvres such as wheat flour cake with shelled onion, figs and sobrassada.
Bouquet of Lettuces and Herbs accompanied by a fennel shot
Chilled Almond Soup with cured Spanish mackerel and melon
Escalivada & Brandada with wood-fired vegetables and salted cod
Lamb Mallorcan Style, cabbage wrapped, with shelled beans, fingerling potatoes
Pa Amb Formatge I Reim: Mallorcan cheese ice cream, grape coulis, toasted bread
Now the disapointing news: if what we were served were the best Mallorcan wines, I cannot commit to visiting Mallorca purely as a wine tour. The 2 reds were mediocre. One had a name you’d want to forget: Motor America, and the other, although much more drinkable than the first red, had a short finish and nothing really notable for comment.
In all fairness, both reds were not DOC wines, but rather ordinary table wines. I understand that there are several Denominaciones de Origen in Mallorca and perhaps there were technical reasons why some of those couldn’t be presented. I will also be fair by saying that I did not taste the white wine served because I arrived late and I heard that it was a DOC wine.
In the past, I listed England, Georgia and Corsica as wine frontiers to visit, and we did on Wine Lovers Tours with great satisfaction. I am reluctant to say the same for Mallorca but hopefully I will have the opportunity to taste better representations of what this island can produce.