When the state supplied coffee had run out, Vicente had to find a boat that carried merchandise and sailed close to the coast of Ibiza. Barges would leave Ibiza at night and sail to the merchant ships where the buying and selling of restricted goods would take place under a starry sky. The smuggled goods would be hidden around Ses Salinas or Playa Es Codolar for retrieval later, often by ladies in traditional costume who would hide the bounty under their dresses.
So how did Café Caleta come into existence and did the smuggling of coffee influence or create the recipe?
There are many myths and anecdotes of the origins of the recipe for Café Caleta, all believable and unbelievable! Some say that the drink was born from the smugglers, enjoying an alcoholic pick me up late at night whilst waiting to smuggle coffee. Another legend, which I wrote in my book, is that the fishermen of the bay of Sa Caleta would invite the monks from the nearby monastery at Es Cubells to come and join them as they cooked their catch of the day. Wine was consumed with the meal by the fishermen, but not by the monks. So the fishermen devised a way of introducing the monks to alcohol without them knowing, and café Caleta was born!
Whatever the origins of this delicious after dinner drink, it is well worth the effort to make it, and there really is no other way than to make it than with Café’s Ibiza coffee. Still being toasted on the island as it has been for decades.
You can also find it theatrically served at the table in some restaurants on the island. The result is delicious, entertaining and very easy to make.