When you disembark from a catamaran, a boat or a yacht and land on the sunny island of Hvar, the first thing that will get your attention are the wonderful specimens of scorpionfish, John Dory, sea bream, sea bass and other Adriatic beauties being cooled on the ice. If you step inside, you’ll see that you’re walking on an aquarium containing lobsters, crustaceans and whitefish.
Gariful makes guests feel like royalty. Sheikhs and other royals are a common sight in this prestigious restaurant covered on front pages of Croatian and foreign newspapers where it’s praised as one of Croatia’s best restaurants. The list of celebrities from around the world that flock to Gariful is quite comprehensive. Much like the number of top champagnes, sparkling wines, expensive wines and waiters that are there to cater to their guest’s every demand.
Although a bottle of wine and the house specialty, such as the drunken lobster, can cost from one thousand up to a couple of thousand kuna, this charming restaurant will make anybody feel at home, regardless of their status. This is a never-ending show for all senses ranging from the aperitif to desserts. Skilful waiters pour the very best wines in huge decanters, open Moët bottles while making almost no noise or they bring out matches in velvet boxes, which creates a special kind of atmosphere. If you add the pink sunset and the view of the sea, which is just five metres away from the table, to the equation, then you have yourself a fairy tale. In the Dalmatian dialect gariful designates the dianthus, a flower whose bright colours make it stand out in the crowd. Much like this restaurant and its ingenious business philosophy. We should also point out some starters such as lobster soup or the somewhat modest fish soup with its exceptional, tender taste. While you have a glass of white wine, you should try the carpaccio made from assorted fish and octopus with sun-dried tomato and onion sauces. Drizzled in olive oil, they tell us the tale of local fishermen, olive groves and vineyards. Grilled octopus is also a sought after delicacy. It’s lively, yet tender and it’ll soothe your appetite for seafood delicacies. Alongside the official menu, they make fresh fish and lobster broth, gregada or whatever comes to your mind.
The finishing spectacle is the dessert made from several chocolate and fruit miniatures cloaked by dry ice smoke - just to finish things off and put a smile on your face.
Author of photography: Ivo Čagalj/PIXSELL
Contact number: + 385 21 742 999
Working hours: Monday - Sunday: 10:00 - 01:00h
Address: Riva 21; 21 450 Hvar
Price range: more than 300kn