Spanish chef Dani Garcia has opened two new restaurants in New York, bringing authentic Iberian cuisine to the Big Apple.
The three-Michelin-star chef from Andalusia has consciously gone about broadening access to his cuisine, while still paying attention to quality. It has led him to return to New York to open two new venues; elevated dining restaurant Casa Dani, and a first foray into the fast-casual format for the group: Ell Pollo Verde, both at the new Citizens food market in Manhattan.
“There are only 120 people in the world [with three Michelin stars], we have to feel good, but we are going to change our mentality. We are here at the top of the pyramid of gastronomy and now we are going to invert it and go down. We want to be closer to people,” Garcia told Restaurant Hospitality.
New York seems to be having a Spanish Food moment with some of the country’s biggest name chefs like José Andrés and Albert and Ferran Adriá opening locations recently. Garcia is not bucking the trend, however, and has decided to bring genuine authentic southern Spanish cuisine to his Casa Dani restaurant.
“I think that is incredibly important that our first run in New York is very personal and 100% Spanish. Because you are a Spanish chef, probably New Yorkers want Spanish food from a Spanish chef,” he said.
“As our name suggests, Casa Dani is an invitation to my culinary home and with inspirations from my youth, Garcia said in a release at the time of the opening last month. “We’ve spent the past year perfecting our new menu, which features the best of Spanish tradition and something for everyone! Menu items range from our famed tapas, to a whole section devoted specifically to tuna and for good reason, we have imported some of the best tuna in the world from Spain. Additional items highlight Spanish favourites including croquetas de jamon and branzino baked in black salt. At Casa Dani we are working to bring as much as we can from Spain and from my home to yours.”
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