Restaurants Malta | Planetmona

Saturday, Apr 25th


Restaurants Malta - Paradise Found

Paradise Found

La Favorita

The place may look like a garage, but then so do most of the restaurants in this ugly strip. At least the fish is good.
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The anticipation of going abroad, the going abroad, tarte tatin just out of the home oven on a lazy Sunday afternoon, eating it, discovering there are more shoes to be bought, buying them and parading them around the home when no one can see and ask why you’re wearing boots with pyjamas, pink, walking in the rain with the one you love while he holds the umbrella over your head, discovering a new band, driving on an empty road listening to it, handing over my credit card and having the cashier hand me back a receipt to sign rather than two pieces of plastic. These are a few of my favourite things. There are very rare instances where you can’t get enough of something you love. And usually they involve love. Can you ever have enough of love? Of loving and being loved in return by the loved one? Anything else falls into the category of nice when done in small measured doses. Love, by its very essence, can’t be measured. If I did all of my favourite things all the time, every time, they would no longer remain so. Some of them, like the pie and the pink, would just make me sick. Others, like the credit card, would make me broke, which is, my bank manager and I believe, not so strange. Walking in the rain would still send me to hospital no matter how lovingly the umbrella’s held. The constant discovery of new music would make me a DJ. If you did all of my favourite things, it would make you even weirder. Or just a stalker. Favourite things are good in moderation simply because there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Think. It’s usually called obsession, or any of the names for the seven deadly sins. There’s nothing so fabulous as getting some of your favourite stuff just when you hadn’t got it for a long time. It makes the experience so much more intense. Diabetes is our national disease. It seems to be the UK’s too, where 1.4 million people have been diagnosed as having it, and another staggering 1 million are estimated to have it without even being aware. The NHS has a huge problem on its plate (I bow my head in shame and apologise for the atrocious quip). And so do we. The problem is being further exacerbated by the increase of obesity worldwide. Not only do we have good things, and are living the life where food is concerned, we have too much of them. I am always fascinated by what people put in their trolleys at the supermarket. Processed this, and packaged that; anything instant becomes a treasure. No-one wants to put any love into anything anymore. At La Favorita in Marsascala, there were only two things that turned my stomach, and they had nothing to do with the wonderfully welcoming owners or the restaurant food. They were two kids, both disgustingly overweight, who – along with their parents – felt it was perfectly acceptable to run around the restaurant, help themselves constantly to the after-dinner sweets (while eating the main course), and make their presence felt heavily. At some point the girl even started to sing loudly and was shushed by one (also overweight) parent only after I threw visual daggers at her, stopping short of qualifying for a few years at Kordin. She was supposedly having too much fun. You see, I can pronounce myself against excess. Not because I am so virtuous that sins are beyond me. I’m a sinner as much as the next person, but I know my limits. More than a year ago, while undergoing tests for something totally different, I was discovered to be a borderline diabetic. I panicked for a few minutes, imagining my legs amputated and myself blind, because diabetes is no joke. From what I understood, a borderline diabetic runs the risk of developing the disease…if he or she does not control their diet, which has to be low in fat and low in sugar. I read up, sorted out my diet, lost two dress sizes in a month, and regained my sanity and my health. Fingers and toes crossed, I also pushed down my blood glucose levels to lower levels than they’d ever been. If I can do it, anyone can. It may be the same in the restaurant world. La Favorita have done it. They are the fish restaurant that, in spite of apologetic reviews sent in by the restaurant guide reviewers such as ‘one must not be put off by the external modest appearance’ and ‘fracas ceiling and a profusion of bric-a-brac’ managed to win even The Sceptic over. He had to be dragged screaming, first to Marsascala, then to this place, but came out quite happy. Ask him. La Favorita is not a place for frills, so I’ll just get on with the essential black suit of things. It has an excellent menu with an extensive but well-thought out selection of fish and meat. It has a great wine list with a fabulous choice of half bottles which seems to be a rarity on this island. And above all, the prices are staggeringly cheap. On average, the starters are LM1.75, and that includes a fabulous eight slices of great quality parma ham which TS went for, with no frills and no filling of the huge plate with inordinate quantities of decorative fruit. I kicked off with mouthwatering oysters which came as they should, served with perfect wedges of lemon. We followed with two fish soups, the one chock a block with baby langoustine, prawns and shellfish and which is so creamy and dense it’s absolutely to die for and I want the recipe, and the aljotta which TS, although still attached to his mummy’s aljotta strings as everyone should be, still enjoyed. We followed with a cipollazza steamed to perfection (oh, those cheeks!) and a vitella a la favorita, which came heaped with cheese somewhat like you’d make at home. That’s the whole point of this place. It’s offering excellent down to earth stuff at excellent down to earth prices with mummy and daddy Phyllis and Josef doing the hard grind, and the kids (us) happily munching away. And, if you can choose, it can be really healthy too. I’m chucking out a star (just one, mind you, I must be in love) because there are no roast potatoes on the menu, and the only carbohydrate side are frozen chips, although they were sweet enough to ply me with boiled potatoes just because I asked if there was an alternative. And also because the desserts are nothing to write home about. But pastry chefs are the ten carat diamond of the restaurant world: expensive and rare. If these desserts mean that the prices are kept so low, I can live with that. No one’s perfect. So I think I’ll add this ‘converted garage’ (the guide again) to my list of favourite places. I won’t go there every week but every now and again, it sure could make life more savoury. The Malta Diabetes Organisation is holding its annual fund-raising dinner on the 17th October. For further information call 21388212 or 99429499.

Additional Information


Address Gardjiel Street
Town Marsascala
Country Malta


Cuisine Seafood

Contact Details

Contact Number 00356 21634113


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