Tonight, I was going to do a negative review. Something Shannon and I have simply chosen not to do. If we don't like something, we just don't write about it. We like to keep things happy and positive around here, focusing on the things that make us smile. So I won't be writing about how much Famous Dave's sucks. Thankfully, I will be writing about El Bulli. The best restaurant in the world.
I posted an article that Anthony Bourdain wrote a few months ago about his last meal at El Bulli before Ferran Adria closed the doors forever. The article hit me so hard and made me so happy at the same time. If you haven't read it, read it. If you've read it, read it again. http://blog.travelchannel.com/anthony-bourdain/read/a-beginning-an-end/
I just watched the No Reservations episode on El Bulli and it made me smile the entire time, while having a tear in my eye, laughing from sheer pleasure, and wishing that I could be around cooks and chefs like this all the time. I love being around people who are passionate about what they do, no matter what that is. But people that are passionate about food. Well, that just sends me over the top.
The number of dishes served at a meal at El Bulli and the number of cooks it takes to prepare it is astounding. But it's not unapproachable "pretty" food. It's finding a way to extract the heart out of each ingredient, making each of the 50+ courses a stand-alone masterpiece. I am sad that I never was able to experience a meal there, but I'm happy that Tony did such a fantastic job in getting across the feeling of being there and having one of the greatest meals of his life. Having his friend, chef Jose Andres, there with him was just icing on the cake. Jose got his start at El Bulli and his affection for Ferran and what it meant to the rest of his life was touching... "We came to El Bulli without a spirit and we left with a soul."
I love food. I love eating it, preparing it for others and being around others that are preparing it. The passion that food brings out is unlike any other. I've never cared if the food is "fancy" or simple comfort food. The fact is that food is one of the greatest pleasures in life and anyone who is preparing food out of love is ok in my book.
Ferran Adria's goal has always been to make sure that the diner has as much fun as he's having. That's what I want to share with others that I cook for...I loved cooking you this food. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Watch the episode. It might put a smile on your face too.
(It's on again Sunday 8/7 at 8am)