British Heritage

The inclusion of Menorca under British sovereignty made a deep and lasting impression on the island, leaving a wealth of indelible cultural signs such as the numerous English words that blended into the Menorcan language, architectural styles still in evidence today, culinary dishes, children's games, dances and so on.

The “boinders” or bow windows and the typical sash windows can still be seen on many houses in Menorca. The British also brought their own period style furniture, including Queen Anne, Chippendale and some Sheraton pieces, all of which were later copied by local cabinet-makers. Menorca gin, made by artisans in Maó by distilling juniper berries and wine vinegar, was first introduced by the British, who also imported their distinctive culinary preferences.

Traditional puddings became known as “greixera dolça” and “brou de xenc” can trace its origins back to English stock made from beef shank. Gravy was known locally as “grevi” and “manteca inglesa” or English butter features in many Menorca recipes, and the delicious “piquéis” are pickled gherkins and capers. Children still play “mérvels” – marbles – and tell “joques” – jokes – and chase each other shouting “fáitim” – “fight him”.