Chef Quique Dacosta continues to carry the mantle of avant-garde cuisine in Spain. In his eponymous restaurant in Dénia, Spain, which has held three Michelin stars since 2013, Dacosta weaves together a compendium of culinary modernist Mediterranean masterpieces, masterfully inventing, deconstructing and reinventing. It is a constant symphony of inspirations taken from the land around him, from the people and a rich history told through the artful language of Dacosta’s cooking.
Dacosta cooks using only local ingredients, sourced within 75km of his restaurants. Origin is very important to him.
“Our interest in evolution is what sparks our work every day. Working to create morsels that are, in some way, new and seductive. I believe in every kind of evolution: in the evolution of thought, of cooking, of the arts, of technology, of science. Creation is part of evolution. I enjoy and freely express what I feel, and this is a reflection of what I do and have done. It is time to show it,” he says.
“And I also firmly believe in the origin of things. The legacy of history and how it has marked us and marks our evolution. We are, at once, both origin and evolution.”
So which dishes do consider most representative of his cuisine and why?
The Animated Forest - Because it represents a movement in world cuisine. In 2003 we created this dish in Quique Dacosta Restaurante and it ended up becoming a landscape kitchen movement. It has served as inspiration beyond techniques to create lands, stones, essential oils, papers, the treatment of vegetables and spices ... It has marked the work of other chefs in Brazil, Italy, France, etc. It has even transcended to the sweet kitchen and I am very proud of it.
Senia Rice Cooked with a Broth of Smoked Eel, Cherry Pearls and Rosemary flowers - It symbolises a commitment to the evolution of the concept of rice from a Spanish Mediterranean perspective. It is surely an evolutionary harmony that has territorial proximity with typical products of the Valencian community. A new rice, that rescues flavours and ingredients from a variety that symbolises the meaning of paella rice: the Senia. Although we have others such as Assorted Rice, Aloe Vera Rice, Bitter Almond Rice ... Behind this dish, there are techniques such as how to cut the cooking of the rice or how to make the cherry pearls. In short, haute cuisine techniques.
Almond Nougat - It represents a clear conviction of my territory as a language of seduction and inspiration that allows me to communicate with customers who come from all over the world. I can show them in the 3-hour experience at Quique Dacosta Restaurante, what we are and where we come from.