FOR the last decade Marbella has been the stand out location for foodies on the Costa del Sol.
But, little by little there is a new kid on the block.
Coming into its own since the completion of the long remodeling of the centre, San Pedro is truly on fire in the food stakes these days.
An incredible number of quality restaurants have opened over the last year, each offering their own unique blend of cooking style.
Focussing on – or around – the brand new boulevard, they range from the hyper-modern to the authentic health-kick style.
In particular, KM0 (see below), run by talented local girl Amanda Gedeon, Urban, run by a Russian-French couple, and Ambrosia, stylish in the extreme, epitomise this new revolution.
And then there is the new Gym Junkie Cafe (see below) and the cool new ‘fusion’ restaurant, Benisty, an offshoot of the town’s long-time standout restaurant Albert & Simon.
“Before the tunnel, everybody avoided San Pedro but now there are a lot of good restaurants and bars opening,” explained Pascal van den Broek, of Happy Days, who once cooked for President Clinton. “It’s definitely the new coming area for the whole Costa.”
The leading purveyors of this drive for haute cuisine must certainly be Albert & Simon, which has been serving up fine French food for three decades.
Counting on a splendid wine list, with hundreds of references from around the world, brothers Albert and Simon are more deserving of a Michelin star that most.
Just across the road you might want to check out the very elegant L’Impronta, an upmarket Italian joint, run by capable Francisco Vacas, who actually heralds from Cordoba.
Another great spot is Vaca Loca, right by the stylish new bridge. The brainchild of expat businessman Andrew Levene, the menu has a great mix of steaks, burgers and ribs, all cooked on the grill.
You should also check out Hogan Stand, a well established Irish pub named after the famous Gaelic football stand at Croke Park. Run by capable Ross, it has typical bar snacks in the pub, while serving up more formal fare at the restaurant next door.
Another long-term stalwart is Malcolm Spendlove, who has been at the helm of the ever popular Passion Cafe for the last 16 years, as well as the excellent Mr Gourmet Burger, which counts on 100% beef.
Last but not least, a great stop off is Rincon de la Sala, which sits in the heart of the town with a great pavement location.
Part of the popular La Sala group, the busy menu changes regularly and there is a daily ‘menu del dia’… and if you are lucky you might just bump into a range of footballers, who part own the restaurant including David Bentley, Paul Robinson and David Pleat.
Body beautiful at gym cafe
A NEW gym cafe is helping San Pedro body buffs fuel their addiction.
The Gym Junkie Cafe, Spain’s first protein eaterie, serves up vitamin-stacked meals – ideal before or after a workout.
The cafe’s mouthwatering menu includes grass-fed beef, protein pancakes and an omelette bar – complete with seaweed, broccoli and tuna omelettes.
Owners Jamie, from London, said: “We are gym junkies, but we noticed there was nowhere around to get food like this.”
Jamie and girlfriend Deborah designed the menu with manager Ben Hayes and head chef Caffian Baldwin, using fresh local produce to make their sauces.
Contact: [email protected] or call 627 17 95 61
Anything but fast at KM0
IF you are looking for real, authentic locally-sourced fare, look no further than KM0.
A fabulous mix of tasty dishes, very much on a healthy tip, ingredients almost all herald from nearby and vegetables are paramount.
While there are some fabulous vegan dishes, such as the remarkable raw Maki sushi, with cauliflower, carrots, avocado and wasabi, you can also count on delicious grass fed Retinto beef from Cadiz and local free-range chicken.
The grilled prawns cooked in squid ink black wheat were excellent, while the slow-cooked cod loin with rosemary, as well as grilled octopus with guacamole, ‘micro greens’ and a sweet pepper mousseline were enticing.
Run by capable Amanda Gedeon, who also owns the highly-rated Bellaria, in Marbella, the stylish restaurant is bound to do well.
Contact: 951 480 549