Simon Rogan opened his first restaurant in the Mediterranean, named “ION Harbour” in Malta, where seasonality and local produce inspire an ever-changing menu. From the vantage point on the fourth floor of the beautiful Iniala Harbour House hotel, guests can take in the most spectacular views of Valletta’s Grand Harbour, whilst enjoying an unforgettable dining experience.
As a notable pioneer of the farm-to-table movement, Simon Rogan’s ethos is guided by hyper-local ingredients that are harvested, fished or foraged by the best and most sustainable regional producers.
Here at ION Harbour, his vision is now turning towards how his principles and practices, perfected at his award-winning restaurants in the heart of The Lake District in the UK, can be adapted to our local climate and culture.
For Simon and ION Harbour Head Chef Eoin Smith, Malta’s landscape provides contrasting opportunities and challenges – high summer temperatures and low rainfall are countered by warmer winters, including a ‘second spring’ around October time, another opportunity for seasonal highlights such as broad beans and asparagus, as well as abundant seafood and an array of indigenous herbs and plants.
Together we have worked tirelessly to identify the very best and most aligned suppliers, working with experts and insiders to discover small-scale, sustainable producers including spear fishermen, and a third generation salt farmer in Gozo. We also work with a specialist forager who assists with the identification of specialty and native breeds.
So each month, season and day is a new chance for us to harvest and explore fantastic ingredients and foster relationships with growers, producers and suppliers who are passionate about their craft.
For lunch and dinner, a multi-course tasting menu showcases the very best of seasonal Malta. From Wednesday to Sunday, a shorter lunch menu offers a perfectly paced interlude to business meetings or a leisurely day in Valletta.
A carefully curated wine list sits alongside a unique drinks list that also celebrates sustainable producers and lesser-known ingredients sourced from the island. In a bid to minimise waste, our talented bar team work with our chefs to utilise surplus ingredients from the kitchens such as peels, stalks and stems, creating an array of cocktails.
Simon Rogan shared his feelings on his Instagram account: “I am delighted to share the news that we’ve opened a new restaurant, ION Harbour by Simon Rogan, in the beautiful city of Valletta in Malta at Iniala Harbour House Hotel. Since our first overseas opening in Hong Kong, we’ve been working on how our principles can be adapted to different climates and cultures around the world. Our ethos is guided by hyper-local ingredients that are harvested, fished or foraged by the best and most sustainable regional producers, and we will continue that wherever we go. At @ionharbour, we have identified the very best like-minded suppliers, and have worked with experts to discover small-scale, sustainable producers including spear fishermen, and a third generation salt farmer in Gozo. We also work with a specialist forager who assists with the identification of native plant varieties in the wild. Malta’s landscape provides contrasting opportunities and challenges for our menu – high summer temperatures and low rainfall are countered by warmer winters, including a ‘second spring’ around October time. Our tasting menu is a showcase of locality, including “Siggiewi strawberries and bee pollen cake, marigold and milk ice cream”, which makes the most of the glut of strawberries on the island throughout May. Nods to our classics can also be found in dishes such as “ION”, a replica of our signature caramelised miso dessert, at ION Harbour served with Maltese Bambinella pear. We hope to welcome you to Malta and ION Harbour very soon.”