The fresh crabs from the port of Sóller, which are fished daily, are the gastronomic emblem of this city in the Serra de Tramuntana. To taste the crabs on one of the terraces while enjoying the life of the harbor is a true luxury for all senses.
The sculpture of a crab at the entrance of the Port de Sóller shows the visitor that he is crossing a gastronomic border. The visitor has left the valley of Sóller, with its scent of orange and lemon trees. Now he enters the port: a different culinary world, with the eminent taste of the fisherman and the crab as a flagship.
This coveted crustacean species is called Aristeus antennatus, but here it is known as 'gamba roja' (red crab) or directly 'crab from Sóller'. (But it is also fished in other parts of the island, as in Andratx).
The good reputation of the crab is old. Already the Romans used the red crab to prepare garum. This was a sauce of fish and marine animals, which were attributed to aphrodisiac properties. Today, we find the crabs as an ingredient for tasty dishes: grilled, in calderetas, paellas, broths or cooked with a vinaigrette of garlic and parsley...Perhaps the most delicious way to prepare crabs is the simplest: grilled and with some salt.
The red crab is one of the main actors of the Balearic fleet. They are particularly fished with the so-called `gamberas'. These are barques de bou (trawlers). The catch is sold in the lonjas and the markets and then ends on the menu of many fish and rice restaurants. If you have the chance, do not miss to discover this taste.
We recommend you to enjoy the crabs in a restaurant or on a terrace in the Port de Sóller, while you watch the colorful hustle and bustle of the port, the boats' up and down, the passing of the passers-by or the old trolley car at the sea.