We have become increasingly aware of the importance of gastronomy when planning a trip.
We’ve come to realize that we can also learn about a culture in bars and restaurants. This is another way to embrace local traditions and participate in the local culture. And it’s also a way to find out what a country tastes like.
Teaser: The pastry chef marched
Teaser: The value of the product
Teaser: Travel and eat
Chef MB restaurant
100% Pan Pastelería
It’s not just people who become stars; this can also happen to certain destinations. Such is the case with Playa San Juan in Guía de Isora. This town of just seven thousand inhabitants happens to be home to more Michelin-starred restaurants than any other place in the Canary Islands. M.B. (Martín Berasategui) boasts two, while Abama Kabuki has one.
Their cuisine represents two completely different worlds (one Spanish, the other Japanese), but both prepare their food over low heat, offering diners the chance to enjoy culinary excellence.
Guía de Isora has positioned itself at the epicenter of Tenerife’s culinary map in its own right. In addition to M.B. and Abama Kabuki, Alexis Garcia’s 100% Pan y Pastelerías has also drawn a cult following in town. People from all over the world come to Guía to enjoy its excellent food.
For years, gastronomy played only a minor role in our travels. People would plan their vacation itineraries around museums and shops. That was the hallmark of leisure-time consumption for decades. We often said, “Let’s just have a bite to fill up.” Gastronomy consisted of finding whatever place was open and quickly refueling so we could get back on our established itinerary, which was what really mattered.
Over time, we have become increasingly aware of the importance of gastronomy when planning a trip. Over and above museums, art galleries, architecture, and shopping, bars and restaurants are also great places to learn about a culture.
And they also offer a way to learn about a country’s taste. It’s another way to embrace local traditions and participate in the local culture. Fresh fruit, fish, and meat are completely different in each location, either because of the way they’re prepared or processed or simply because the product exclusive to the area due to the environmental conditions in each territory. Eating at a bar or restaurant that is authentically part of the place you’re visiting is a trip within the trip itself.
I don’t know you, but I’d be willing to bet that it will satisfy all your leisure-time expectations and desires. It offers a golf course, swimming pools, a beach bar, an idyllic beach, and Michelin-starred restaurants. It’s also in one of the best locations on the island, with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and the island of La Gomera. The sunsets here are spectacular. I’m sure you wouldn’t mind spending a few days here.
Whether or not you stay at the hotel, the complex also houses two restaurants that are a must-try for visitors to Tenerife. The menu at M.B. (Martín Berasategui), managed by Erlatnz Gorostiza, is based on a carefully crafted interpretation of traditional Spanish cuisine. And Abama Kabuki, with David Rivero at the helm, takes us on a culinary journey to Japan using ingredients typical of the Canary Islands. Although it may seem like these two restaurants have little to do with the local region, nothing could be further from the truth. They are both committed to excellence and to using locally produced ingredients. Many of their dishes feature a nod to typical products from the Canary Islands.
Vast expanses of banana plantations flank this beach, which gives you a sense of the importance the primary sector on the islands; bananas are the Canary Islands’ most typical product.
Playa San Juan lies between Alcalá and the Abama hotel. It was once one of the main fishing ports in the south of the island. Today, it is also residential but still bustling. There’s also a tranquil beach with access for people with restricted mobility, a parking lot, and showers. The seaside promenade was recently renovated, as has the main square in town.
That’s the square where you’ll find the bakery 100% Pan y Pastelería. Alexis García heads this deliciously sweet little nook. This native of Tenerife won Best New Pastry Chef at Madrid Fusion. As an avid traveler, Alexis has managed to combine flavors and textures from all over the world with typical products from the islands, offering baked goods with an avant-garde touch. You can taste the creativity and hard work in every dessert and every loaf of bread. That’s why you’ll find that many travelers have put this place on their wish list when they arrive in Tenerife.
Today, traditional markets, pastry shops, ice cream parlors, bars, and restaurants have become part of the itinerary when planning any trip. We all like to eat because we enjoy good food and we love sharing a table with friends. Gastronomy is no longer a merely anecdotal aspect of our travels; it is another way to discover each region’s true identity.