Banyalbufar is one of the most beautiful Tramuntana villages by the sea, with small limestone houses and neatly terraced hillsides. Even though I often go hiking in the mountains, it was only recently that I got to know Son Tomas. Banyalbufar’s popular restaurant has been family-owned for more than thirty years. It’s fantastic to sit on their patio in the cool breeze, looking out on the endless blue of ocean and sky. You relish the food, the vista, the atmosphere – and instantly feel at ease.
Friends of ours were staying in a hotel nearby so we met at Son Tomas for a long and tasty lunch. Marcos Picornell runs the restaurant together with his sister and chef Natalia. He proudly told me its story, nicely illustrated by a collage of personal photographs hanging in the restaurant. His parents had bought the old mansion Son Tomas in the early eighties and converted it into a two-story restaurant. For the fifth time in a row, it has been awarded the Bib Gourmand this year, the Michelin’s prize for a more down-to-earth, reasonably prized cuisine. And rightly so. We indulged in fresh fish, most delicious lamb filet, and crunchy roast pork. And finished with a classic: orange-almond cake with vanilla ice cream.
Not exactly what you would call a light lunch but I was happy to recharge my batteries for our steep way back across the mountains to Esporles. Years ago, I owned a bright yellow messenger bag and sometimes people on the street asked me for the mail, confusing me with the postwoman. I only remembered that funny story while we were hiking along the old Camí des Correu. The cobblestone path was used by the postman to deliver mail to Banyalbufar and further on. Upon his arrival, people were surely eager to get the news – I don’t think he had to ring twice.