Lo and behold, the power of social networks. After unsuccessfully trying to get a reservation on my own for three years in a row, a a friend of mine connected me with a friend of his, who had a reservation for 6 people. It just so happened that 2 had balked at the last minute. Would I be interested in joining them? Duh.
Luck doesn't knock twice. Thank god for friends of friends. I quickly said yes, and thus I had my ticket for the culinary ride El Bulli represents these days. Expectation was running high, so keep on reading...
The food, despite what some people may say, was not only intellectually stimulating but extremely tasty (for the most part at least). We had the the chance to seat at the kitchen table, which definitely enhanced the overall experience. We also had a nice chat with Ferrán Adria after the service was over.
One particular dish that impressed me were the Olivas Sfericas (pic above). These look like regular olive oils, served from olive oil jars, and put in a spoon for you to taste.
The surprise comes when you put it in your mouth and the olive explodes, filling it with the liquid taste of an olive.
Unfortunately for me I had attended a demo by Albert Adria the previous week, so I was already aware of the "punchline". This was the first of several dishes using the spheriphication technique, which has been taken forward by the el Bulli Taller team.
Click on any of the pics to see more.
A quick rundown of the dishes:
Muelle de Aceite de Oliva Virgen
Marshmallow de Parmegiano
Oreo de Oliva Negra con Crema Agria
Baguette de Malta
Palomita de Queso
Garrapiñado-nitro de pistacho
Crunchy de Cereales: Quinoa con Almendra Amarga
Caramelo de Aceite de Calabaza
Ninfa de Algodon
Ostra con su Perla
Lio-Gazpacho a las Hierbas Frescas
Ravioli de Malta con Mantequilla, Erizos y Lima
Brioche al Vapor