Appetite is located on the busy road of San Magin in Santa Catalina (the hip and happening cool neighbourhood of Palma). Having already established two successful businesses in Valencia (Appetite Valencia is their flagship, and La Cantina de Appetite being their cheap eats street food establishment), owner Bonnie said coming to Palma felt like a natural move. Through her contacts here on the island; Koldo Royo and Ronny from Dukes, Santa Catalina was the perfect option for them to find a new home for the Appetite brand.
The setting is laid back and relaxed; owner Bonnie wanted to create a unique and welcoming space and most importantly, keep it unpretentious. The atmosphere is just that – pleasant and chilled. The modern décor and soft furnishings make sure you’re nice and comfortable as you peruse their lovely list of cocktails and food. Chalk boards keep you updated with the latest menus and drinks; personally I can strongly recommend the ping pong cocktail, a deliciously potent fruity drink that sneaks up on you and slaps you round the chops with a kick of lychee. Oh, and vodka. Obviously…
The open kitchen is an inviting view; you can literally watch your food being cooked and smell all the amazing herbs and spices as they come together with delicious ingredients. Appetite is a vehicle for Bonnie’s belief in supporting local, organic, fresh food. She feels strongly about this, saying “I believe as a restauranteur and chef, we all have to play a part in controlling waste and environmental impact. We still have a long way to go, but I am satisfied we are heading in the right direction.”
The food at Appetite is like no other Asian restaurant; Bonnie believes their uniqueness comes from the fact they understand what true authentic flavours are. Coming from a long line of chefs (her whole family either cook or are in the hospitality industry) food has always been a big part of Bonnie’s life; with her Asian heritage and Australian upbringing, she has always been surrounded by an abundance of great dishes and the emphasis has always been on sharing. This is reflected in the varied menu which offers lots of great dishes which are best shared – who doesn’t want to taste a bit of everything? They do not change or reinvent the recipe; instead they focus on making the food light and fresh. Which for me is great – it means I can eat more!
We started with the lamb buns, which are served with a delicious spicy mayo to drizzle over. The lamb is cooked to perfection, the buns are light and fluffy and the coriander sprinkled over cuts through the richness of the meat to make it feel very light. Then we had some delicious prawn rolls; again super light and so many fresh flavours with a bright and tasty dipping sauce. We then shared a main course of the organic beef mince with a fried egg, served on rice. The starters are deceptively filling, so between two of us we found this to be enough – however it would be great to go in a larger group to order lots more to get a real bite of everything!
In addition to lunch and dinner menus, Appetite also offer a brunch on weekends. Besides the usual menu, they offer
the two most popular dishes from Bonnie’s Sydney café; chilli chicken quesadilla and eggs benedict on potato rosti, plus Bonnie’s favourite coconut pancakes.
The service was friendly but unobtrusive, they’re happy to make recommendations or offer advice on any or all of the dishes. And the chef was lovely! She came over to talk to us about the dishes and clearly has a great deal of passion for her work.
In addition to the restaurant, Bonnie and her crew are available for catering events – they also have a Brazilian BBQ concept they offer in addition to the Asian and Mediterranean food they offer, and can accommodate from 20 to 500 people with no problem. They offer so much more than standard canapes or cold plates and really love to give guests the wow factor with their show cooking.
Bonnie’s ethos is reflected across all facets of her growing empire and is something we should all take note of: “Life is too short to eat bad food.” Amen sister.
Check their Facebook page for latest opening hours as they’re subject to change over winter; however right now they’re open daily for lunch from 1230, and dinners from 1900. On weekends, their brunch menu is available from midday.