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Published on Aug 16, 2017
Ferran Adrià, the legendary chef behind El Bulli, talks about his career, his legacy and teaching the next generation of cooks.
Eighteen years old and desperate for cash to fund a summer of partying in Ibiza, the future world’s greatest chef did what any teenager might do – he took a job washing pots. If it weren’t for that summer season as a kitchen porter, things might have turned out very differently for Ferran Adrià, whose restaurant El Bulli went on to be named No.1 in the world a record five times.
Several decades later, El Bulli would close and Adrià would hang up his chef’s hat, with the restaurant’s legacy firmly cemented in global gastronomic history. Techniques that are now taken for granted at fine dining restaurants around the world, such as foams and spherification, were created behind the closed doors of the El Bulli taller or workshop. Spain itself rose to the global consciousness as a gastronomic force to rival France. Adrià and his brother Albert became legends of the cooking world. When El Bulli conducted its final service in July 2011, it was hailed as the end of an era.
In our new Best and Beyond series, presented by Miele, we hear from five of the finest chefs on the planet, all of whom own restaurants that have been named No.1 in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants over the list's history – Ferran Adrià, chef-owner of the first ever No.1 in the list, El Bulli, Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park (No.1 in 2017), Massimo Bottura of Osteria Francescana (No.1 in 2016), Joan Roca of El Celler de Can Roca (No.1 in 2013 and 2015) and René Redzepi of Noma (No.1 in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014).
On the occasion of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’s 15th Anniversary in Barcelona, we gathered these global super chefs in one room and asked them about what they’ve learned over the course of their careers, how they continually strive for greatness and what nuggets of knowledge they’d like to pass on to future generations. From René Redzepi never truly believing that Noma was the best restaurant in the world to Ferran Adrià admitting he thinks he knows nothing, their answers were sometimes surprising, often entertaining and always inspiring.
If you can't wait for the Best and Beyond videos, don't worry – you can watch the full playlist of speeches from #50BestTalks in Barcelona, featuring Daniel Humm and Will Guidara, Joan Roca, Massimo Bottura, René Redzepi and Ferran Adrià: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjdzv...