Kod Marka and Dubravka, Šipanska luka, island of Šipan

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Gourmet stories from a fishing island

The restaurant located in Šipanska luka, where the greatest gourmets enjoyed fish dishes prepared by Marko Prižmić for years, and today his son Đino, was joined by the Dubravka restaurant, at the other end of the port. Now you can enjoy the original flavors of the beauty of the sea at two addresses

None of my Elaphite voyages or arrival in the City in the last twenty years can pass without visiting the great chef and caterer Marko Prižmić and eating there. From the very beginning, when his Šipan gourmet shrine was discovered by my friend Jadran Gamulin, Marko took a place at the very top of the list of my gourmet wishes and gourmet follow-up recommendations. Already after the first three plates he deserved me to call him natkogom. Because Marko is an exceptional chef, of the kind in which there are not many secrets except one – every dish he cooks, whether as simple as spaghetti with tomatoes or octopus meatballs – has a unique taste and pleasure incomparable to what you will recipes prepared by another chef. Here is our chance to enrich our senses with such art, in his little restaurant that he built next to the family house and opened twenty years ago, when he retired. This is his life story.

What’s the secret?

He spent his entire working life in or around the kitchen. First there was a small chamber on board, then a waiter in Plat. At the end of the sixties, he became the head of the hall, and a few years later the manager of Taverna Plat, then one of the best restaurants in the Dubrovnik area. When a marina was built next to Sorkočević’s castle in Komolac, he became the head of its catering department, and since 1979 he has been the manager of the hotel in Šipanska Luka. He retired in the mid-1990s, but did not want to do anything and withdraw from people and guests.

Fish is prepared in Marko because Šipan is a fishing island. Seven or eight professional fishermen live there, which is a lot for a school where there are not even four hundred permanent residents. Only for those who don’t like it, she prepares two or three meat dishes – beefsteak, her own variant of lamb chop that is baked under the honeycomb and pork fillet in Šipan style, which she called herself because the island doesn’t have its own traditional dish. It used to be a grancigula salad, but these crabs haven’t been caught for a long time, so there’s no more of that dish.

“Since we Prižmićs moved from Vela Luka to Korčula in the early 1930s, you will always be able to eat Korčula pepper in me. The art is to cook the fish, not grill it. It’s already a secret, which again mostly consists of a love of cooking and good measure, and I love to eat well and cook everything as if I’m cooking for myself. You have to love cooking, just like any other job. Then every fish is good for you, even small change. For me, she is even better. I often wish she was blacker than a hunter! ”

Praise also on CNN

Whatever it is, Marko only cooks fish from his climate, with our vegetables, in our way. How rich and interesting Dalmatian cuisine can be is shown by the fact that only chard knows how to prepare sixteen dishes that each is different, and it is similar with cabbage and cauliflower. He makes them from six different ways in the Balanča garden, and the same goes for our other vegetables with a rich aroma and special taste. On Šipan, where people have a large field in addition to backyards, there is still enough, although the cultivated area is less, and the number of vines has decreased dangerously. There are too few people on the island, and if you don’t come to the vine just one day, it decays.

The measure that is almost crucial to the success of every spice is felt in everything. From the appearance of the barn to the fact that it never occurred to him, when word of him spread and he was praised on CNN, to increase the restaurant and terrace because he could not take care of every guest the way he thinks the guest deserves. His son Đino doesn’t think so either, who successfully changes it with the same recipes.

Usually nothing is ordered here, neither fish nor how to prepare it, but they make the best choice for the occasion and day. And what he chooses is remembered for a long time. I also didn’t forget what I was eating when I first arrived at this unique place.

A meal to remember

We started with a non-island entrée, salmon on toasted bread with slices of onion, sprinkled with a little red pepper, and Marko immediately taught us about it.

“By the way, I like paprika as a spice much more than pepper. It has a specific smell, which remains even after eating. But one should be careful with it. The fish should not be cooked with paprika, but should be added only at the end, so as not to permeate the fish and its taste ”.

Milk was another dish, like, barely fried in oil and generously sprinkled with Chinese lemon juice from Mark’s Garden. Seedlings of this large yellow fruit that looks like a lemon on the outside, and when cut, like an orange, were brought to the island by a relative who grew them in Konavle. Milk, juvenile fish, made from white fish, is a specialty only in this area.

I definitely became addicted to the kitchen of this person when the third dish arrived on the table, the preparation of which I followed in detail. Simply like the first two, as well as the uncleaned grilled squid we ate at the end, the fried shrimp witnessed Kog’s delicacy. It would say nothing, and so good! The secret is in the homemade yeast, which is sprayed on already half-finished shrimps and which gives the sweetness of their meat a special, hitherto unknown taste in my gourmet career.

Applause for the chef

I have repeated the tasting and chakula in Marko many times since then and it would take a lot, a lot to write to describe what I ate in it. However, in order not to be deprived, I will say something more about his masterpieces. For example, I often start my meal with dried tuna on a spicy arugula, followed by marinated raw anchovies, and then I finish the appetizers with a unique pleasure for the palate, octopus meatballs that literally melt in your mouth. This is followed by the first plate, a distinctive red shrimp risotto and cuttlefish appetizer, which disappears from the plate in an instant to make room for the magnificent forte – its widely known poppy from whose tos protrude pieces of cherries, grouper and squid. For the one he cooked for a group of fellow chefs and restaurant owners a few years ago at the end of the season (luckily I was with them too), he got applause like some kind of piano virtuoso at the end of a concert.

Continuation of a good gourmet story

Now – this story is not over. All that you have read so far and that Marko has been creating for years, he left little by little to his son Gina. And when he overcame all the finesse of the guests’ wanderings and continued in his father’s footsteps, and when we thought that Marko would only figure in his betulica as befits his age, here is a surprise …

Marko opened a new restaurant – Dubravka. In a beautiful house that is also a small family hotel he repeated everything described above. At the end of the port there is now a new “Marko”. Now it is up to you to choose whether you want to go to the old betula with Marko Đin or to the new one with Marko.

We gourmands have nothing to complain about!

Written by: Radovan Marčić

Recordings: restaurant archive

Izvor: https://chaine.hr/hr/restorani/kod-marka-i-dubravka-luka-sipanaka-otok-sipan

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