The charismatic restaurateur who owns the Mesón Los Rafaeles, Jaime Pizá, known as Menut, passed away on January 24 at the age of 79 in Palma. Menut was born in Binissalem in 1942 and his commitment to traditional cuisine and his impeccable customer service led him to open Los Rafaeles in 1969, on Passeig Mallorca de Ciutat. His know-how and human quality led him to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Los Rafaeles in 2019, which continues to serve its regular clientele and mourns the loss of an exemplary man.
The winter 2019-2020 edition of the magazine published by Mallorca Global and Mallorca Caprice included a profile of the restaurateur signed by the journalist Tomás Ibarz and which we reproduce below:
Menut, the carisma from Los Rafaeles
By Tomás Ibarz
The story of Jaume Pizá could be that of any small Majorcan businessman, one of those who are always on top of their business and who have spent decades leading a project imprinting their character and their trade on it. It could be a repeated story, already known, but it is not because no one else is Jaume Pizá. Jaume (Menut for his friends and hundreds of clients) turned 50 years old on April 3 -2019- at the head of the emblematic Mesón Los Rafaeles. He invited all of Mallorca and all of Mallorca attended the celebration.
One of the most loved guys on the island. He is one for the treatment he gives to his clients and for the care and quality in everything he offers in his restaurant since 1969.
Who hasn’t been treated to a glass of cava upon arrival or after eating at Los Rafaeles? Who hasn’t burst out laughing when Menut told him how small his feet are and how little hope he already has of growing up?
Menut is as small as he is hyperactive. At his age, he has spent 50 days in his kitchen from early in the morning to control the stews and, from noon, in the living room to give his diners a hug. Five decades taking care day in and day out of buying the best possible product on the market. And closing at night the emblematic place of Paseo Mallorca in Palma. Luckily he lives nearby.
At his age, many of him would have chosen to accept one of the numerous offers that have been made to him for the transfer of the premises. He admits that he has once thought about the idea of retiring a couple of times, but he always ends the story with “I’ll die working”.
50 years ago he took over the reins of a bass called ‘Los Rafaeles’ and he hasn’t even bothered to change the name even though his name isn’t Rafael (his father is). Jaume has always known that the important thing is quality and treatment.
These have been the keys to the success of a business, an adventure, a way of life, which was born in the Franco regime and has survived at least four economic crises that have swept away hundreds of premises in the city.
And he is also a visionary. For a couple of years, he has established ‘Vierneo’, a social phenomenon that begins with lunch on his tables and does not end before eight in the evening. The restaurant and sidewalk fill with people to kick off the weekend. Food, drinks, atmosphere, music, shifts… and Menut. He makes sure that you feel like his friend.