A few months ago I got a groupon from living social for a Spanish place called Mallorca. I had never heard of this place, and their menu didn’t seem that exciting. I put off going there because there was no “hype” about going. I am so glad I got the groupon though, because this place was pretty damn good.
Mallorca advertised itself as serving the best continental European cuisine in Pittsburgh. I’m sure there wasn’t much debate over that, given that it might be the only restaurant serving continental European cuisine. Many of the staff were also foreign, which makes me wonder if they’re from Latin America or actually from Europe. Probably the former though.
I really, really appreciate good bread now, and this was good bread. It was most likely made by them. Chewy, but soft and fragrant, this was bread I kept on going back to. However, I would have liked it served warm, and maybe some house made butter. Its a little disappointing that the butter came in prepackaged.
We ordered 2 appetizers, which were paid for by my groupon. The stuffed mushrooms weren’t bad, but weren’t amazing either. The stuffing was some sort of seafood flavored stuffing, probably anchovies or crab, or something like that? I felt like it was strong in taste, but maybe a little lacking in depth of flavor. The stuffing was very salty, and by the end of the mushroom that’s all I could taste. I think it was average.
Since it was a Spanish restaurant, I wanted the chorizo, of course. I don’t really understand why there are burnt bits and a pool of oil under a “boiled sausage,” but this was good chorizo. Not dry, but salty, spicy, crispy and fragrant. Maybe it was broiled? That would explain the burnt parts. I think because this dish was brunt, I wouldn’t order it again. It should be basic that food that is served isn’t burnt.
They had about 5 or 6 specials that weren’t listed on the menu, and this was the goat dish. It tasted like it was braised in red wine. It had a little musky/game-y flavor, which was a nice touch I think, not over-powering. They braised it so long that he tendons were soft and chewy. I liked it.
This was one of the specials of the day as well. It came with a cherry or some sort of berry sauce. It was very tender, well cooked and not greasy. I like duck in general, so I like this dish, but I felt like it could have been more seasoned. Maybe I should have tried it with the sauce together.
Finally, this is what I ordered. Its basically Quail covered in delicious curry and it had stuffing inside. Lots and lots of stuffing. Each piece is composed of the breast meat plus a leg, and most of the volume is stuffing. I really liked it, although both the curry and the stuffing was salty. It had the best flavor out of all the dishes, I think, and very fragrant. The stuffing was the same as the stuffing used in mushrooms. The quail was also perfectly cooked and not dry. I would recommend this dish, and definitely would order it again.
Finally, a dish from their menu. The chicken was well cooked, but unfortunately the spinach, raisins and pine nuts did not stand out at all. My friend even cut me a piece with a lot of the stuffing, and I failed to taste it. Another friend of mine makes a delicious dish with these ingredients (without chicken) and sherry wine, and it isn’t even anywhere close to that. I was disappointed with this dish, and wouldn’t order it again.
Each dish came with its own salad, while the other three were sides for everyone to share. I wish I knew about the salad so that I could ask for the dressing on the side, because there is way too much dressing on it for my liking. Also, the salad came with what I assume to be a marinaded artichoke heart which was interesting. It just looked liked a white disk in my salad, but when I bit down it separated into layers. At least I think it was artichoke hearts.
As for the sides, I like the assorted greens. There were snap peas, snow peas, squashes, broccoli and carrots. I always welcome more vegetables in my life, so I enjoyed those. I did not like the rice. For one, I very much dislike long grain rice because I find it very coarse and crumbly. However, I would have liked it if had good flavors, but the color is just for show. It didn’t really taste like anything, except for long grain rice (ew). The chips were interesting. I wonder if it is normal to serve chips for a side in Spain, but they were very potato-y, which I liked. However, they weren’t salted which was disappointing. They worked really well as a scoop for my curry though.
Overall, I would definitely come here again despite the price. They gave big portions (more than any of us should be stomach-ing) and their dessert selection seems interesting. There was a Portuguese chocolate (cake?) that I wanted to try, but was too full to do so. Their selection of desserts comes in a platter, about 8 of them (probably old desserts, because they were all falling apart and unappealing). If I knew beforehand I would have saved space for the dessert, but maybe next time.