Jump to content


participating member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  1. We ate at both Mugaritz and Akelare last week, and in our opinion Mugaritz wins hands down. All the savoury dishes at Mugaritz were very good to excellent, except two big dissapointments: The flowers starter of fried, shaved artichokes and flower petals has the quality of a snack rather than a proper dish. There were tons of shaved, fried artichokes and very little flower petals, giving the impression of munching away on a bag of crisps. But who wants to eat a bag of crisps prior to a proper meal at Mugaritz? We didn't like the second dish (crisp bites of taro and coconut with a frozen stock of grilled sardines and sweet oil) much either. At first I imagined coconut and grilled sardine to go with each other really well, similar to the ajo blanco soups with coconut and caviar at Dani Garcia's restaurant Calima. The stock had a strong smoked flavour, almost identical to a dashi broth flavoured with shaved bonito flakes and was chilled by pouring it over a slush of ice. The overall effect was dash slush with two tiny paper thin disks of (not young) coconut flesh. Boring. Mugaritz really excelled with the desserts. The pain perdu is the best version I have ever tasted. This year the accompanying ice cream had a new twist by infusing the milk it is made from with fig leaves. Great stuff. We also really enjoyed the pumpkin, coffee and boniato dessert. Pumpkin and coffee is a great flavour combination, and the boniato really strikes a harmonious chord with the other two ingredeients. We were also offered a complimentary dessert of excellent peach with a vanilla almibar and green almonds. At the end of the meal we were invited to the kitchen, and the cooks very warmly recommended a restaurant in San Sebastian called IBAI. We tried to make reservations, but nobody ever picked up the phone. Has anyone been there? At Akelare, the overall impression was a total reign of “form” over “function”. The dover sole and the red mullet dishes looked really pretty, but the fish was so salty that any of the other flavours on the plate were hardly perceptible (in any case, the fusili that came with the red mullet are only filled with homeopathic quantities of various sauces). We additionally ordered some plain dover sole for our six year old daughter. The fish , for which they charged an amazing €50, was way overcooked. That really left an unpleasant aftertaste. The peach dessert was a joke. Clearly very labour intensive, but precisely the same taste can be easily assembled at home by serving plain white chocolate, an ordinary ready-made peach puree, some cherries, almonds, pistachoes and an inferior pain perdu. The fish at Elkano was another major dissapointment. It started well with a starter of very nice chipirones, grilled and with onions. Then we had a 1.2kg dover sole. Although the fish was certainly super fresh and perfectly grilled, I had considerable problems with the preparation of the dish. The fish arrived at the table on a big plate swimming in a fairly salty lemon vinaigrette. The waiter who carved the fish inevitably doused the fish in the vinaigrette thereby ruining it for me. I like fried crispy chili squid with lime zest. But why serve such a strong lemon vinaigrette with such a nice dover sole?! Puzzles me.
  2. The most german fare is to be had at Vau.
  3. I had the same feeling as you two years ago on my first and probably last visit to Gagnaire. The kid glazed with oriental flavours and with blueberries still brings back bad memories: The kid was overcooked, no sign of oriental flavours and the blueberries were a couple of spoons of blueberry jam straight from the jar. Incredibly weird. I also remember a starter of stringy, dry and sandy snails accompanying an otherwise acceptable seafood stew. Desserts were also underwhelming with only two different straightforward soufflés to choose from. And Gagnaire was there personally ...
  4. At the high end, I highly recommend Calima, in the Don Pepe hotel. The cook, Dani Garcia, used to work in the well-known Tragabuches restaurant, where he used to have a Michelin star. For some reason, he has not regained the Michelin star at the new location. But the food (modern Spanish cooking with malagueño roots at ** star Michelin level) and setting is fantastic. Also, try out the old centre of Malaga for casual dining. Friday and Saturday evening is great for going out with great atmosphere and hardly any tourists (but it doesn't really get going before 10 pm or later). Two Tapas bars that my Malagueña and I like are La Mensula, close to the bullfighting ring, and more modern La Rebana close to the cathedral. For casual dining I'd recommend Palo Cortado which has inventive starters, very good grilled meats, and always one or two excellent fish dishes, or Meson Astorga, which offers quintessential Malaga cuisine, or Clandestino right in the centre, a very casual place favoured by the in-crowd. We've been several times to Cafe de Paris, which has a Michelin star, but were always dissapointed.
  5. El Jornu in Ribadesella is also worth a visit for exellent and simple fish dishes.
  6. Munich has several interesting, casual restaurants that offer what you're looking for, i.e. new twists on traditional german and/or austrian recipes. And it is a pretty town too (although, perhaps, Berlin is the only city in Germany which meets your requirement of a truly big city). I would recommend the following Terrine Blauer Bock Landersdorfer und Innerhofer Zauberberg Broeding Retters Schubeck Except the last one, they are not Michelin-starred. Another very interesting restaurant is to be found in Nuremberg, approximately one hour by train from Munich: Restaurant Essigbrätlein, Weinmarkt 3, 90403 Nürnberg, phone: +49911225131. It is really tiny, I guess a maximum of 20 diners, so you'll definitely need a reservation. The food is fantastic. malacitana
  7. I had precisely the same impression when I had lunch at Can Roca a couple of weeks ago. When I compare with Carme Ruscalleda's food, I have to agree with Michelin to promote only her restaurant to three stars this year.
  8. Berlin has nine one-star Michelin restaurants, most of which are deserved. So there is definitely the possibility of high-end dining in Berlin. Maxwell, by the way, is certainly not in that category. Definitely noteworthy, in my opinion, are the restaurants VAU, with a style of cooking which is not French, but creative takes on german and austrian food, and 44, where Tim Rause does some fantastic and very creative cooking (not recognized by Michelin so far).
  9. There is the Hasir chain (5 restaurants) which offer decent Turkish food. Their newest restaurant is on the Oranienburgerstr. near Hackescher Markt. But don't expect high-end dining.
  10. I personally like VAU which serves very accomplished modern German food. They have a lovely terrace as well. malacitana
  11. No, haven't been to either Schlossberg or Sonnora, since both of them are virtually in the middle of nowhere. From my experience, I liked the food at mueller and vendome better than at either schwarzwaldstube or bareiss. For me, to decide between mueller and vendome is almost impossible. They are both very, very good. Of the twenty or so three-star places I've tried so far, I'd probably rank them 4th or 5th.
  12. I've been to both, Bareiss and Schwarzwaldstube a couple of years ago. Can't remember the menu details, but I remember that I was utterly dissapointed by Schwarzwaldstube which is supposed to be the best of the german three star chefs. I remember the food as very unexciting. But maybe I was unlucky, or it was a mistake to go for the tasting menu. I remember that many of the a la carte dishes sounded more daring. I remember Bareiss as a very nice experience. From both, expect the food to be more classical than at Dieter Müller's. I've also been to Heinz Winkler's three star restaurant in Aschau. This is, in my opinion, the worst of the german three star restaurants. It appears that his cuisine stands almost still.
  13. I've been to L'Alezna this summer for lunch. It's a nice, modern restaurant which is located above a small river, and the diners have a nice view of the landscape. It is very difficult to find, though. The food seemed to be an absolute bargain, if I remember our four course lunch menu was around 25 Euro. I had an additional starter, which was a sea urchin, filled with a cider sauce, and topped with a small, very thin biscuit which again was topped with small cubes of apple jelly and julienne of apple. One had to crush the biscuit and mix the crumbles and the apple into the sea urchin. The result was excellent. Then we had a spinach salad with grilled green asparagus, asturian cheese, and crystallized honey. Very nice. Then a refined classical asturian fish stew, with a very concentrated fish stock. Not a creative dish, but the ingredients were all excellent. It was one of the best fish soups I ever had. The meat was a braised piece of iberian pork in an infusion of dark berries. You must like pork fat to enjoy this, but it was melt in your mouth. Dessert was a carrot cake with caramelized orange zests. Was good, but didn't strike me as very spanish. Altogether a very nice experience.
  14. michelin issued press release on 21 Nov, and the guide appears on the 24th
  15. Germany now has a seventh three star restaurant: it was awarded to 34 year old Christian Bau cooking at Victor's Residenz Hotel Schloss Berg. There were also two promotions to two stars: Aqua in Wolfsburg and Amador in Langen.
  • Create New...