My Perfect Day: Anne Sijmonsbergen

Chef, organic farmer and author Anne Sijmonsbergen shares with U her 'Perfect Day'...

How do you start your day?

Gorgeous organic English Breakfast tea, steaming with a touch of organic full fat milk. In the summer, a gorgeous tall sun-brewed tea with lots of ice and mint. And immediately after, a big family tussle and cuddle that involves humans, dogs and cats.

Leisurely lunch go to?

If I’m at the farm in the north and want to slip out and meet a few people, Can Curune, San Lorenzo. It’s the meeting place of the north, for lunch, dinner and football. I love the cous cous on Saturdays. It’s a real Ibiza original. If we are thinking early morning swim, a read and a lunch, I love the restaurant on the far left of Benniras Beach. It’s been owned by a great family for a long long time. They do an excellent grilled fish, great salad and the best prawns with garlic.

Favourite way to pass the time in Ibiza?

An early morning stroll in the tomatoes, stopping by the fig trees to pick a few. Followed by a swim at Benirras Beach or Cala Xuclar, ice tea and a book and the feeling of looking forward many hours under a sun umbrella. 

Favourite Ibiza landmarks, and why?

My neighbour’s 1000 year old olive trees, they are more than 5 meters in diameter. His father’s chickens used to lay eggs in their old knarls and crannies. The history of it is breath-taking. The salt flats, in continuous operation for 2,700 years starting with the Phoenicians. They are just beautiful, stunning and incredible. If you got to the old port at the end of Salinas, you can see hundreds of years of renovations, layer upon layer. There is a little cave with the most amazing sea glass, perfectly round like pebbles. I think I am holding glass that is ancient. Dalt Vila: Ibiza’s old hill town and home to my restaurant El Portalon. It has added so much to my life on Ibiza. The beauty, the history, the simple lines and old old buildings. Miraculous.

Tipple of choice and favourite cocktail hangouts?

I love a vodka tonic, also a great glass of wine. Bar 1805 in Sa Penya has a great cocktail, the Green Beast created by the illustrious bartender Charles Vexant. Great place, great drink. Others? A Friday night vodka tonic with my husband on the square in Santa Gertrudis.

Favourite dining destinations, and why?

My husband and I love Cala Xuclar for dinner. It’s very basic, rustic, feet in the sand, on the most secluded beautiful bay. Dining under the stars by the sea, light by candles and torches. It’s magical. The chef worked at the famous restaurant Tickets in Barcelona. He grills the best fish on the island and his salads are fantastic.

Final stop for a nightcap, and why?

As boring as it is, my husband and I end every dinner or party with a nightcap on our terrace. It’s our evening recap. Not very Ibiza I guess.

Rest hangover remedy?

A spicy Bloody Mary with our own tomato juice and lots of ice. A bit later, buttered Es Pins toast and a plunge in the pool

Where next on your travels?

We’re thinking of two places: the Fjords of Norway or the West Coast of Ireland. Nice cold sea destinations, out of the Ibiza August heat with great cold water seafood.

Anne Sijmonsbergen moved to Ibiza fifteen years ago and into a 450-year-old farmhouse, Can Riero, which now supplies local organic produce on the island to top restaurants and private chefs. Anne has dedicated herself to studying Eivissa's food culture, meeting cheese-makers, bakers, bee-keepers, fishermen, herders and the fellow farmers who are leading Ibiza’s burgeoning sustainable food movement. Anne’s first restaurant El Portalon opened in Ibiza in May 2017.