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Review: Chopstiqs Ibiza: popular Asian cuisine

Home of the healthy hangover cure.

Located in a quiet side street just off the main road in Playa Den Bossa, Chopstiqs is a popular Asian cuisine restaurant striving to change the face of fast food in Ibiza. Tucked behind KFC and hot on our restaurant radar for two years now, the eatery opened its doors in summer 2013 and has been enjoying a stampede of hungry party goers and island residents ever since. But this place is a little different to its fast food neighbours…

I arrive on a stormy September evening at the light and airy spot, greeted by friendly owner, Gilbert. Hailing from Manilla in the Philippines, Gilbert set up home in Ibiza thirteen years ago, deciding he'd found his own little slice of paradise. Fast forward to 2013, Chopstiqs was born and he hasn't looked back since. The main man's ethos is to offer a healthy South East Asian alternative to the usual fast food joints that surround him. He tells me “ If you've been dancing for ten hours straight this is the food that is going to make you feel better; it's the perfect hangover cure”. You won't find any chemicals or nasties in these dishes, just good healthy and wholesome ingredients - and it's affordable, too.

Ordering Made Easy

Ordering was easy with the addition of the restaurant's new supersize menu board, a selection of 16 main dishes to choose from hailing from every corner of South East Asia. A fusion of authentic dishes from the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore. Each dish comes in small (250g) or large (huge). I was tempted by the week's special dish, each new week brings a recipe form a different country and this week was Korean dish, Japchae, but I eventually settled for the Chopstiqs Special Stir Fry with rice (you can choose the noodle version if you prefer). A mixture of beef, chicken, prawns and veggies, packed with Chinese cabbage and topped with fresh spring onion, priced at a bargain 5.50€ (a large will set you back 7.99€). If you're a vegetarian you can swap the meat for tofu and extra veggies. Other menu delights include Narsi Goreng, Thai Panang Curry and Japanese Teriyaki Chicken, plus healthy noodle soups.

On Gilbert's recommendations I ordered the traditional Filipino appetiser, Okoy, a shrimp and sweet potato fritter, to feast while the main meal was prepared in large open kitchen. Other starters/sides include traditional spring rolls, which I'm told are firm favourites with Chopstiqs regulars and it's easy to see why at only €2.80 a portion.

Pad Thai Perfection

Heading out to the large terrace, decorated with traditional bamboo panelling and lush greenery, chilled tunes fill the air creating a relaxed ambience. The mains are ready in no more than 5 minutes and I greedily tuck in. My dining companion had chosen Pad Thai, which again is a mix of prawn, chicken and beef which can be replaced with tofu. We're assured this is an authentic take on Pad Thai, whilst many European versions of the dish are made with soy sauce, Chopstiqs do it right with the traditional fish sauce and you can see why, it tastes delicious. The Chopstiqs special stir fry didn't disappoint either, a generous helping of prawns and meat, aromatic flavours and crunchy veggies equalled a very satisfied me. I went for the small pot and it upsets me to say I struggled to finish it. I'm a great believer in clearing your plate (or pot in this case) but I carted the rest home incase I was feeling hungry later.

Time After Time

It's easy to see why people come back year after year, time after time to sample Gilbert's healthy cuisine. Chopstiqs have amassed so many local customers they've started a wall of fame, framing pictures of returning visitors. As well as the delicious food, it's this personal touch that gives Chopstiqs the edge. Gilbert threw in a ‘how to use Chopticks' lesson for my inexperienced self. Alas I'm not a fast learner and needed a little help with a small plastic contraption that holds the chopsticks together at the top while you learn. I'm told these are usually reserved for children but my embarrassment soon evaporated when I realise I was managing to get a substantial amount of food on my chopsticks without spilling it down the front of my dress - winner!

The future is looking bright for Chopstiqs with plans in the pipeline to franchise the brand around the world. So my advice is if you're looking for an affordable fast food hit that won't leave you feeling empty, skip straight past KFC right on in to Chopstiqs. It's worth those extra couple of drunken/hungover steps - trust me.

Here's to making the wall of fame sometime soon!

Quick Facts

What? Chopstiqs

Where? Playa d'en Bossa, Ibiza

When? From 12pm-2am Daily throughout the summer (weekends only during winter months)

Why? Healthy fast food that'll cure your hangover and won't leave a dent in your wallet.

Average spend per head? 10€ will buy you a starter, small main pot and drink - bargain!

Veggie Options? Yes. All meat dishes can be replaced with tofu.

Top Tips? Make use of the home delivery service (min order 15€)

Room for Improvement? We wished it opened later for a post clubbing feast

WORDS | Lucy Moon PHOTOS | Aide Monge

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