Named after a border oak tree that grows in the hills inland from San Sebastian – one specific tree, rather than the species – Mugaritz takes attention to detail to new heights.
Everything about chef Andoni Luis Aduriz’s restaurant – from the specially created barbecue smell that emanates from the restaurant, designed to remind approaching patrons of their childhood, to the way the table is laid (or not) – is done for a precise reason. The aforementioned tables, for example, are left bare save a white tablecloth and a centerpiece of a broken plate, to eschew any sense of restaurant hierarchy or provide any hint of the meal that awaits. As Aduriz himself says: “We strive to transcend the customs that curtail our freedom.”
One reason for this is that Aduriz intends a meal at Mugaritz to shock and surprise as well as delight with the use of what he playfully refers to as ‘trompes l’oeils – culinary tricks of the eye. Diners aren’t given access to a menu before booking and are instead treated to a personalised series of some 20 or so dishes. Some creations play with aroma, texture and flavour while others are designed to be provocative, tell a story or evoke an emotion. The restaurant’s now-famous starter of edible ‘stones’, which are in fact potatoes styled cleverly to look like teeth-breakers, is well known and oft-copied in kitchens across the world, but Aduriz has many more tricks up his sleeve.
- Aldura Aldea 20, 20100 Errenteria, Gipuzkoa, Spain
+34 943 52 24 55