On entering Peix Vermell, situated in a centuries old stable with a traditional stone vaulted ceiling, you are immediately struck by the atmosphere and history of the building, which is beautifully complimented by the colourful modern art adorning the walls. The restaurant can be reached by two separate entrances, either Carrer Montenegro or Carrer Sant Feliu and is only a few minutes walk from the Cathedral, marina waterfront and Palma’s chic shopping district.
The welcome we received from Misha summed up the restaurant perfectly. He was warm and charming and exuded a fun and vibrant personality that was carried across through all of the staff, who could be heard laughing and joking with the clientele, in several different languages. A fan of Arsenal, Misha has a wealth of knowledge on all things football and sporting and was overheard extolling the virtues of Aussie Rules to an antipodean guest as if he were himself Australian. This is one of the charms of Misha and has kept locals returning to this Palma institution since it opened in 2013. Throughout the night he stopped and chatted to every single table making all of his guests feel as if they were the only cover in the restaurant.
Aside from Misha’s almost encyclopaedic knowledge of football is his passion for food and, more especially, fish and seafood. The menu that he has created is simple yet delicious, serving up freshly caught seabass, prawns and octopus, to name but a few, on a daily basis. There are also meat and vegetarian options to satisfy those with less pescatarian tastes.
To start, Anouska, ever the fabulous photographer, and I, shared the Octopus Grilled with Eggplant Sauce and the Shrimps with Herbs and Garlic. The Octopus was delicious and meaty and grilled to perfection and the flavours were beautifully punctuated by the Eggplant Sauce. The prawns were an absolute delight and they positively glowed with colour in the serving dish. Starters range from €10 for a large serving of Padron Peppers to €25 for the Pata Negra Sanchez Romero Carvajal 5J Acorn fed 100% Iberico Ham.
To follow up for our main dish Misha recommended the house speciality of Seabass in Salt Crust with Spinach and ‘flattened’ potatoes. The fish itself was delicate and sweet with the salt crust retaining all the juice of the fish. What was really wonderful about this main was the theatricality with which it was served. It appeared in a beautiful crust which was cracked, and the fish then filleted, at the table causing the scents to waft temptingly through the room. The spinach and sweet sultana side dish added to the overall depth of flavours. Other specialities on the menu are the paellas which several satisfied tables around us were greedily tucking into. Mains range from €18 to €57 for the Seabass for two people. All of the dishes were washed down with a beautiful bottle of Mallorquian Malvasia Ca’n Pico which complimented our choices perfectly.
Talking to Misha about his choice of style for the restaurant he said that he wanted to harness the spirit of the island, where tradition meets creativity, and to serve it up in a cosy and charming location. Fully aware of all of the hard work that goes in to running a restaurant Misha says that the point is not to be full but the point is for all to be happy and that is all. Looking around the packed to overflowing restaurant, where as many were being turned away as were seated, it would seem that this ideal is being more than fulfilled at Peix Vermell.
Peix Vermell is open seven days a week from 1pm – 11pm.
Carrer Montenegro 1, or entrance from Carrer Sant Feliu 7, 07012 Palma de Mallorca
+34 971 079 374