“Mona de Pasqua”, the Catalan Easter cake topped with chocolate figurines

April 22, 2011 05:56 PM | CNA

Catalan tradition dictates godfathers to offer a “Mona de Pasqua” to their godsons or goddaughters for Easter Monday. The cake goes with a chocolate sculpture or figurine, which in some cases are true masterpieces. Chocolate houses, chocolate trains or popular cartoons made out of chocolate are some of the creations that top the cake. Catalan patissiers expect to sell 660,000 “mones” this year, although smaller ones due to the economic slowdown.

"Business must be as innovative as possible. All the staff has to take part”, says the President of Torres Wines

April 4, 2011 11:58 PM | / CNA / Ignacio Portela Giráldez

Torres is one of Catalonia's most globally recognised wine houses, with vineyards and wineries in places such as Chile and California. Company President Miguel A. Torres believes that innovation in every step of the process of wine production is necessary. He also stressed the importance of exports to get over the crisis.

“We have to sell cava as an exclusive, glamorous product”, says PIMECAVA chairperson

March 22, 2011 12:45 AM | CNA / Ignacio Portela Giráldez

PIMECAVA is the Association of Small and Medium-sized Cava Producers. It is chaired by Mercè Rosell, who claims in a video interview that the only way to compete against French champagne is by marketing cava as a quality and prestigious product. In order to do that it is fundamental to have the support of big cava companies like Freixenet and Codorniu and a good relationship with exporters.

Carme Ruscalleda: “Our cuisine is more rural. It focuses more on local products and is more accessable”

March 14, 2011 09:55 PM | / CNA / Ignacio Portela Giráldez

In a video interview, the Catalan chef who has been awarded five Michelin Stars, Carme Ruscalleda, explains her vision of Catalan cuisine. She describes it as a combination of specific techniques and wit carried out by farmers and fishermen mixed with French and Italian bourgeois cuisine. According to her, Catalonia’s gastronomy is derived from local products and is spreading worldwide, thanks in part to the influence of Ferran Adrià.

The Catalan chef Santi Santamaria, with 7 Michelin stars, dies at 53

February 16, 2011 11:46 PM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

Santamaria was at his Singapore restaurant when he died. The actual causes of the death are still unknown, but the family talks about a heart attack. Santamaria was a defender of the Catalan traditional cuisine. He had two restaurants close to Barcelona and one in Madrid, Toledo, Dubai, and Singapore. He was the first Catalan chef to get three Michelin Stars for his main restaurant, ‘El Racó de Can Fabes’.