Wish I may. Wish I might. Dine at elBulli once in my life? Well, it looks as if cold water has been thrown on my hopes of dining at elBulli in the near future. Argh. During a speech at the Madrid Fusion 2010 renowned chef Ferran Adrià recently announced that the world's most famous restaurant will be closed during 2012 and 2013.
You may be wondering why I am upset about a restaurant taking a break in a couple years. That is probably how long it would have taken me to get a reservation at this coveted restaurant. Unless, of course I play the Spanish "enchufe" option. Getting a reservation at elBulli is no easy feat. A trip to elBulli is gourmand pilgrimage. The chance to dine at elBulli was in the top five thoughts I had when I found out we were moving to Barcelona. Seriously. I. MUST. DINE. THERE.
Olive oil spring and salt presented in a jewelry box. | Photo: elbulli.info
:: The Math of elBulli ::
+ elBulli only opens during half of the year, approximately Spring/Early Summer to December
+ elBulli only serves 45 to 54 people per night, depending on menu and party size of each table
+ Three Michelin Stars
+ Consistently ranked the world's best restaurant
+ An outrageous amount of booking requests each year (I have seen this number quoted from 400,000 to 1 million.)
= The need to book months and months in advance for a table and hope that you can get through the day reservations open.
:: How To Book A Table At elBulli ::
You are probably too late to book a table at elBulli for the 2010 season, which runs from 15 June 2010 to 20 December 2010. So, mark your calendars for September 2010, when the 2011 opening calendar will be released. elBulli's website has a reservation calendar online (for viewing only, not booking), along with the phone number and email.
Or, you can try the famous Spanish-style "enchufe" option. In English, "enchufe" means "plug in." It was also the first Spanish slang words I learned here. When you move to Spain, you quickly realize that using the enchufe option is sometimes the only way to get things done, but that is another post entirely. So, rack your brain for any possible connection you may have to facilitate a booking at elBulli. And still, keep your fingers crossed, because that probably won't work either.
elBulli Kitchen | Photo: Directe.cat
:: elBulli "da un paso adelante" / elBulli takes a step forward ::
Entire blogs could be written about the uniqueness (that doesn't even touch the tip of the iceberg as a descriptor for elBulli) of the gastronomical world that Ferran Adrià and his team have dreamed and created. I will leave that part up to people that have actually dined there. Let's just say, part of the experience usually involves at least 30 courses that lasts through the wee hours of the morning.
"Eating well is something you can do at home. The point about what we offer is that it is more than eating; it is an experience," Ferran Adrià
elBulli closes for half the year, so that they can create, adapt, deconstruct, reconstruct, explore, challenge and cook the magic of elBulli. For this reason, the restaurant is closing from 2012 until 2014. In the speech that announced the closure, Adrià discussed his 10 year plan for the restaurant. How many restaurants can you think of that have 10 year visions? In addition to spending time in the elBullitaller (workshop), Adrià will also be busy at Spain's first gastronomic university teaching his view of "molecular cuisine" to students from around the world.
:: The elBulli Experience ::
- Official elBulli Website
- elBulli Books and Encyclopedias
- Video of Day at El Bulli by Jay Rayner
- El Bulli by Nick: written by Nick Lander via Janice Robinson
- If The World's Greatest Cook Cooked for a Living, He'd Starve
At elBulli Restaurant | Photo by Costa Brava Xtreme Running
Please note: any item purchased through my Amazon links generates a commission for my website. Thank you for your support!