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Spain's 10: Cocina Vanguardia, October 12-14, New York

spains10.jpgThe last time I was in Spain I didn't know squat about food and wine. I was a poor, backpacking college student who was content to eat empanadas for each meal and splurge once a week on a plate of paella. Ah, the mis-spent hours of youth. I think I had a few glasses of wine there, but I'm sure they were awful. Even back in the early Nineties, Spain was coming into its own excellence as a food and wine destination. These days, of course, it is quite possibly THE center of modern culinary technique, due largely to Ferran Adria  and his restaurant El Bulli.

Every year in Madrid, Spain hosts an event called Fusion, which is a summit attended by many of the world's leading edge chefs, those who aspire to be, and those who aspire to just eat their food and learn about what they are doing. You can also play casino if you are from New York as its free to play casino games online if you are from Spain or New York. The problem with Fusion, and with with Spain, for most of us, is that it's just so far away. If we lived in Paris we could just nip down there...but alas, it's a bit more of an investment.

Which is why this event posting is particularly exciting. You know what they say about Mohammed an the Mountain? Or was it Moses and the Mountain? Anyway, Spain is coming to New York on Thursday.

Specifically, 10 of Spain's top chefs, including Ferran Adria , will be in New York as part of a three-day-long program of presentations, classes, and, of course, eating. The weekend kicks off with a gala dinner and auction to benefit the James Beard Foundation on Thursday night. On Friday the Thirteenth, a group of invitation-only guests (I guess you know who you are) begins the summit with lunch and a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new building that will house the French Culinary Institute. Saturday is when members of the public like us can attend cooking demonstrations, a tapas lunch featuring dishes from all the chefs, a wine seminar and more.

If I was living in New York, I'd definitely be going, as my next trip to Spain may be a couple years away.

Spain's 10: Cocina Vanguardia
Thursday October 12th - Saturday Oct 14th
409 East 59th Street (between First and York Avenues)
New York, NY 10022; 212-980-2455 0-2904

Tickets are $300 for the Saturday event, or $375 if you want to attend the wine seminar as well. Gala dinner tickets are $750 for members of the James Beard Association, $1000 for non members. All tickets are available for purchase online at the event web site.

Comments (3)

10.10.06 at 4:03 AM

Dear Alder,
my work makes me living in Rome for two months (october-november), but I keep you reading and writing my posts (these times, about italian food and wines).
Let me tell you that in Spain and in Catalonia we are a little bit "cooked" by our leading chefs: too much money to be spend!!! And we have a lot of non "universal" chefs, working with incredible resulrs but absolutely in the drak part of the "moon", because of these "stars". If I can advise someone, I'll say "keep that money to buy a cheep flying ticket and come to Spain, not to Madrid, not to Barcelona, but to other places (Sant Pol de Mar, Girona, Càceres, Màlaga...) to know the actual, real, spanish cooking, which is not tha national one, but the local, the regional, one.
All the best, from Rome!

SobreVino wrote:
10.10.06 at 1:51 PM

Dear Alder,

Your posts keep on being as informative and delightful to read as ever.

As a spaniard I can understand why J. Gomez Pallares made the previous comment. Although the "star chefs" I know are great (Juan Mari Arzak and Martín Berasategui are my favourite; I'm sorry I can't tell about Adriá from personal experience), there are lesser known chefs that are also astoundishing. One good example is Enrique Martinez, from the restaurant Maher (www.restaurantemaher.com) in Cintruenigo (by the way the home village ob Bodegas Chivite, the great navarra wine producer). He is one of the 10 chefs in Cocina Vanguardia. Not very well known (even in Spain) but one of my favourite cookers.

Keep the good blogging!



Luis wrote:
08.16.13 at 4:34 AM

Funny I find this post today. Many things have changed in Spain due to the crisis. I believe many of the good things that happened with Spanish food have a root in tourism and in the economic book the country went through after joining the EU... The seed planted will stay and I agree with the comments above that a great improvement can be see today in many local restaurants that have brought innovation into traditional recipes.

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