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The last three sous-chefs from Ferran Adrià’s El Bulli to open their own restaurant in Cadaqués

Three deputy chefs of what was recognised for consecutive years as the best restaurant in the world, El Bulli, run by the Catalan chef Ferran Adrià, are now set to open their own restaurant on the Costa Brava. It will be called ‘Compartir’, the Catalan verb for ‘to share’. They aim to offer “simple cuisine”, with dishes to share. El Bulli closed its doors last summer, however it will transform itself into elBulli Foundation, a centre to experiment with food, design and senses. It is expected to open in 2014. The three sous-chefs will also collaborate with Adrià’s new project.

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19 April 2012 12:36 AM

by

ACN / T. Tàpia

Roses (ACN).- The world famous restaurant El Bulli, considered for many years as \u2018the best restaurant in the world\u2019, has its own spin-off. Three of its most important members will open their own restaurant in the Catalan coastal town of Cadaqués on the Costa Brava at the end of April. Mateu Casañas, Oriol Castro and Eduard Xatruch were the last sous-chefs in El Bulli, Ferran Adrià\u2019s lieutenants in the three-Michelin-star restaurant that closed its doors last summer. The three sous-chefs have decided to open their own restaurant, although they are still linked with El Bulli, which will re-open again in 2014 transformed into elBulli Foundation, a space for creation and innovation, linking research in cuisine and visual arts, but not functioning as a restaurant. The new Cadaqués restaurant will open its doors at the end of April. It will be called \u2018Compartir\u2019, the Catalan verb for \u2018to share\u2019. They will offer \u201Csimple cuisine\u201D with around 35 or 40 different dishes on their menu. All dishes have been created for sharing.


The Catalan restaurant El Bulli revolutionised world cuisine by making gastronomy a challenge for all senses and creating what was later called \u2018molecular cuisine\u2019. Ferran Adrià led this revolution, becoming \u2018the chef of the decade\u2019 according to \u2018Restaurant Magazine\u2019 in 2011. Furthermore, the 3 Michelin star restaurant was recognised on four consecutive years as \u2018the best restaurant in the world\u2019. Now, the three El Bulli sous-chefs, Adrià\u2019s lieutenants, want to cook \u201Cwithout the pressure\u201D of being in such a recognised restaurant. They want to offer \u201Chonest food\u201D, using the techniques and the working spirit they learned at El Bulli, located in the coastal town of Roses, next to the Cap de Creus.

Oriol Castro arrived at Adrià\u2019s restaurant in 1996. The next year, Mateu Casañas arrived and, in 1999, it was Eduard Xatruch\u2019s turn. With the years, the three become El Bulli\u2019s sous-chefs, the last three ones the restaurant had. In fact, their link with Roses\u2019 restaurant will continue, as they will collaborate in elBulli Foundation, which will open its doors in 2014. However, meanwhile, they have decided to start their own culinary adventure in Cadaqués, a coastal village near Roses, at the end of the Cap de Creus, in the Costa Brava.

The restaurant will be located in Cadaqués\u2019 historical centre, a beautiful white-painted-house old fishing village. \u201CWe like the place, it is an old village house that we have renovated\u201D, they explained at a culinary event in Roses on Monday. \u201CWe have been working at El Bulli for many years, and deep inside we have coined how things have to be done\u201D, said Casañas. The type of cuisine in \u2018Compartir\u2019 will be \u201Csimpler [than El Bulli\u2019s], market cuisine in which we will try to work how best to develop the product\u201D, he explained. Some of the dishes on the menu will be traditional gazpacho (fresh tomato and cucumber soup), escalivada (a Catalan traditional dish with roasted peppers and aubergine), paellas, or anchovies, but all presented and finished with their own particular style.

Another of the distinctive elements of the restaurant, which will have a dining room for 40 people and an outdoor terrace for a similar amount of people, will be the way the food will be served. Casañas explained that everything will be placed in the centre of the table, and the guests are expected to eat from there, following a philosophy of sharing. However, the individual portions will be clearly differentiated and even if someone asks for eating from his or her own dish, the restaurant will not have any problem at fulfilling the client\u2019s wish.

Casañas insisted that they have thought of a restaurant for everybody. \u201CPeople should not think they are going to eat in El Bulli\u201D, he stated. \u201CFrom a conceptual point of view, El Bulli represents a heavy responsibility for all the required creativity\u201D, he added. \u201CNow, we want to cook well, but not thinking all the time about creativity\u201D, he explained, \u201Ccooking without pressure\u201D. \u201CWe want to cook and enjoy ourselves,\u201D he concluded. People will be able to eat \u201Cquickly\u201D or \u201Cwith friends for some \u20AC30\u201D per person, although some few dishes will be quite elaborate and people could pay up to \u20AC60.

They will combine their work in \u2018Compartir\u2019 with that in elBulli Foundation. They will have a team of seven other people working in the kitchen, three of which also passed through Ferran Adrià\u2019s restaurant. They have also counted with El Bulli\u2019s sommelier, Ferran Centelles, to develop their wine menu, with some 40 different wines.

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  • Mateu Casañas during the presentation of 'Compartir' (by T. Tàpia)

  • An image from Cadaqués' historical centre (by ACN)

  • Mateu Casañas during the presentation of 'Compartir' (by T. Tàpia)
  • An image from Cadaqués' historical centre (by ACN)