Built almost half a millennium ago by the Knights of Saint John, the Maċina has been a landmark for centuries and is now hosting Hammett’s Maċina Restaurant. The gastronomical concept is a modern representation of traditional Mediterranean culinary influences that date back to the Phoenician times. Composed by a multi-award winning team, previously of the Villa Brasserie in St. Julian’s, led by talented Chef de Cuisine Andrea Marchetti and directed by 24-time award winning Chef and restaurateur Chris Hammett. Dining al fresco is an unforgettable experience in the warmer months when the imposing bastions, the fortified city of Birgu and spectacular harbour are illuminated by traditional firework displays. During the colder months patrons will enjoy the fortified walls in the company of world class wines from the wine cellar.
The menu is a taste of history derived from the island’s Mediterranean-semitic roots with a contemporary twist using only the finest local and seasonal produce. The stracciatella di bufala with local tomatoes and kalamata olives or tortelli ricotta with local tomato, basil sauce and accompanied by aubergine crisps are fitting starters, whilst the wild grouper carpaccio with pea and horseradish, lime mayonnaise and potato glass is a house specialty. For mains, try the scallops with asparagus, lumpfish roe and black garlic, or steamed fillet of red snapper with courgettes, mint puree, carrots and pink pepper. Conclude with the crushed lemon pie.