Located in one of Rabat’s lively corners, Palazzo Xara is home to a great dining experience. Spanning nearly three rooms including the large outside courtyard garden, this baroque palace is serving some of the best local food in a totally relaxed and informal environment. There is no pretense as locals and foodies mix together to enjoy a drink or sample an outstanding menu that has lunch, a quick snack to share or a fine dinner all covered. Catering for weddings or a private party, this is a great venue to discover. The service is attentive, and a varied international wine list with good local representation is available.
The menu is varied and covers all appetites. Various platters, dips, sandwiches and wraps cater for the quick bite crowd, including a scrumptious Maltese platter to share or a smoked beef sandwich with mustard mayonnaise and caramelized onions. Fresh pasta dishes including creamy chicken and mushroom penne with sauteéd chicken breast, mixed elder mushrooms and truffle cream, are excellent. Main courses are offered with a good selection of grilled meats, including 300g grilled Argentinian rib-eye with carrot purée, crispy onions and truffle mashed potatoes, plus house-made burgers and a pan-seared rabbit and carrot mash that totally steals the show. A dessert must-have is the date ‘mqaret’ with almond liquor and vanilla ice-cream – simple and yet so incredibly good.