Ferran Adrià Closing El Bulli?
I can’t wait to see how the media blames George W. Bush for this. El Bulli, arguably the best restaurant in the entire world is closing its doors. Is it another victim of the second Great Depression? Has the global economy even reached the Costa Brava?
No. In fact, the reason is quite the opposite – too much business. Cheflebrity and owner Ferran Adrià is tired. He cites 15 hour days and a desire to spend some time with his family for the recently announced closing of the famed Spanish eatery. “No meals will be served in El Bulli in 2012 and 2013,” he stated, adding, “But listen, these are not going to be years of sabbatical.” Chef Adrià made the announcement at the international culinary conference Madrid Fusion. El Bulli celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2012.
Famed food writer Ruth Reichl spoke with Adrià tonight but only had this to say via her Twitter page, “Why do I never understand Ferran? Long talk tonight about why he’s decided to take a break, but I understood about 1 word in 10. Sorry.”
So why so much fuss about a restaurant in a hard-to-get to location in Spain? Because El Bulli introduced the world to a whole new approach to cooking. It is the Mecca of molecular gastronomy – the happy emulsion of food and science. Adrià’s concoctions are mind-bending – suds as a garnish, frozen passion fruit whiskey sour, brochette of banana with bacon, etc.
The news of El Bulli’s closing is like Brett Farve retiring . . . and staying that way. I’m sure the reservations book for 2014 is already filling up. For an idea of what dinner at El Bulli is like check out this blog entry from Lia, Food Network employee and blogger of This Little Piglet. It is a mind-boggling chronicle of the amazing expanse of Adrià’s genius. Or check out Anthony Bourdain’s visit on No Reservations: