Spanish chefs - Meet the revolutionaries

In 2014 a total of 20 new Michelin stars were awarded to restaurants in Spain and two out of the top three best restaurants in the world were Spanish.  Even after the once-dominant force of world cuisine, Ferran Adrià, closed his famed restaurant El Bulli in 2013, Spanish chefs continued to make significant waves in the culinary world.chefs knife

Since the original Basque masters (Juan Mari Arzak, Pedro Subijana, Ricardo Idiáquez, María Jesús Fombellida, Pedro Gómez, Manuel Iza,  Jesús Mangas, Patxi Kintana, José Juan Castillo, Karlos Arguiñano, Ramón Roteta, Xabier Zapirain and Luis Irizar) spearheaded the Basque Nouvelle cuisine movement in 1976, Spanish cuisine has been steadily rising to its current exalted position. This band of ambitious chefs, who were inspired by the likes of Paul Bocuse and the French Nouvelle cuisine movement, felt they could produce food of equal, if not higher quality, using the produce that was abundant in the Basque province of Gipuzkoa. They set out to resurrect and improve traditional Basque dishes and invent new ones using the best ingredients and innovative techniques while retaining Basque authenticity. The movement was as much about cultural identity as it was about food.

This success of this collaborative movement put Basque cuisine firmly on the map and the area now attracts tourists from around the world who come to the region in search of gastronomic adventures and experiences. The group were also fundamental in influencing a new generation of chefs in the Basque Country and throughout Spain who would benefit from the growing worldwide interest in Spanish food. Today’s great Spanish chefs, such as Andoni Luis Aduriz, Eneko Atxa, The Roca Brothers, Martin Berasategui and Ferran Adria were all inspired by the phenomenon of the Basque movement and have continued the tradition of innovation and revolution, ensuring that Spain continues to stand at the vanguard of world cuisine.

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The articles on this page will feature some of the best chefs in Spain as well as chefs in other countries producing great Spanish food. We discover what makes them tick and explore their ideas, inspirations and motivations. We will also see how Spanish cuisine is influencing the world right now and what the future might hold.

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