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Mar Calpena

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    http://baixagastronomia.blogspot.com/

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    Barcelona
  1. Wow, thanks for answering sooooo quickly! You're a such a wonderful and helpful lot... Torrijos was already on my mind as well, and it's probably going to be either that orCa Sento on Friday evening and either Casa Montaña or El Tossal for lunch on Saturday- I'm a bit surprised by no mentions to La Sucursal, though... I thought it would come up, and was also considering it for Friday.
  2. Hi, folks. I am going to Valencia for a Conference on Thursday and may or may not go to Ca Sento (in one of the reviews in this forum someone mentioned you have to get on the good side of the maitre'd, and I'm not sure I want to go to a restaurant where it's not the maitre'd who has to get on my good side...). I'm looking for traditional places in central Valencia (mainly, the Carmen quarter), as I'll be fairly restricted in mobilty by several appointments. Thanks in advance for any suggestions! Mar
  3. Maybe I should be posting this in the cookbooks forum, but I think it belongs here (if there's a moderator in the room, please change it if this is the case) Phaidon has released "1080 recipes" by Simone Ortega in a luxurious, one volume edition, illustrated by Javier Mariscal and with an addendum of menus by famous chefs. When I first saw the enormous book in Frankfurt's book fair my first reaction was a (very loud for the place and occasion, I have to admit) WTF?! In my heart, Ortega's book is the kind that gets stained and loses its spine after a lot of use in a real kitchen, not something you'd be scared to open in fear of anything happening to it. Phaidon seem to have wanted to dress up an old workhorse (even though we are speaking about a very valuable one here!) as something fancy, and I'm not sure how foreign audiences will react to it, or whether we could say 1080 recipes actually portrays everyday Spanish food. But, then again I may be wrong... Here's a review from Slate about this. What do you guys think? Have you had a chance to take a deeper look to the English version? What would your number one choice in cookbooks be when introducing non Spaniards to Spanish food? Mar (Edited for typos)
  4. I have to attend a Congress in Valencia at the end of november, and I'm thinking having lunch at Ca' Sento. There seems to be a debate on this thread on choosing the degustation menu or making some informed choices... I will be traveling alone, so if I book I won't be able to pick and taste from someone else's plates. This obviously points me in the degustation menu direction, but considering I am not on a expense account and that, frankly, I'm making a bit of an effort to go there (and I DO want to drink wine), is a la carte a better idea for me? Excuse me for asking so bluntly...
  5. I am going to Frankfurt, too, next week (for the Book Fair). Could you recommend me good places near the fair grounds? (I know from experience that we are not going to want to venture very far out after a day's worth of walking around, but will want to eat something decent for dinner after the indignities of lunching at the fair) Thanks in advance!
  6. In Spanish, there's the proverb "passing cat as hare", meaning you are giving someone a fake instead of the real thing (preferably, when cooking). Anyway, get anywhere near my lovely kitten Christie with a knife and you are officially dead!!!!
  7. Hu, I've got so carried away I've posted my reply twice...
  8. Let me put it another way... if it kills you, it's not art (or food). It's poison. It's not stimuli to your senses. Music needn't be harmonic to exist, or painting figurative (or any of the two aesthetically pleasing, or at least in a conventional way, at that). But applied arts (aka crafts) need some sort of practical goal, whether it's creating a chair you can sit on or food that's digestable. And to me, trying to redefine Adria majestic craft as art somehow lessens it. He creates a magical effect out of existing elements (the food, the sorroundings at El Bulli, etc...) which still is edible! Its main purpose is not conveying a political agenda or a mood, although it can do all that, but ultimately it is to nourish and feed. Don't know, I've just got on let's-go-back-to-college, I-don't-believe-in-postmodernism, theoretical rambling mode! ←
  9. Let me put it another way... if it kills you, it's not art (or food). It's poison. It's not stimuli to your senses. Music needn't be harmonic to exist, or painting figurative (or any of the two aesthetically pleasing, or at least in a conventional way, at that). But applied arts (aka crafts) need some sort of practical goal, whether it's creating a chair you can sit on or food that's digestable. And to me, trying to redefine Adria majestic craft as art somehow lessens it. He creates a magical effect out of existing elements (the food, the sorroundings at El Bulli, etc...) which still is edible! Its main purpose is not conveying a political agenda or a mood, although it can do all that, but ultimately it is to nourish and feed. Don't know, I've just got on let's-go-back-to-college, theoretical rambling mode!
  10. I have to agree with Bourdain on the craft/art debate. While you can point at just anything and declare it "art", as Marcel Duchamp did with his ready mades, there's at least one technical limitation to food: it must be edible. Therefore, cooking is applied or decorative art, because ultimately there's no aesthetic pleasure to be found in cooking if the preparation renders the food unedible, no matter how elevated the idea it's meant to convey. Having said this, I think that the inclusion of Ferran Adria in Documenta should make us question what we define as art, not what we define as cooking.
  11. My brother went to eat to Manairó yesterday and he came back raving. He was so enthusiastic I was thinking of splashing out and going there next week. However, the reviews I've read are mixed... Fellow eGulleters, has any of you been there? I trust your opinions more than those of anonymous reviewers in other sites or, bless his generous soul, my not particularly gourmet brother! Mar
  12. This Sat the 30th. By all means stop by if you like. ← Grrrr... I'll probably be out of town this Saturday! Hate to miss that...
  13. Don't forget the classics: Leonardo's Kitchen notebooks is hard to beat when it comes to weirdness (hey, the fellow gives proper etiquette for poisoning other guests, invents a machine to chuck meat... from a live cow! and makes chairs out of marzipan. So much for becoming famous on one or two masterworks ). Also, I've been meaning to buy Last suppers: Famous final meals from the death row for a while, but it both intrigues me and creeps me out. Anyone read it?
  14. Hey, I'm really looking forward to getting some of your pasta! Drop us a line when you open, as I don't want to miss that! Mar By the way, whereas I'm linking this thread from my blog, is there somewhere where non English-speaking people could follow on the developments? If you are not already doing this from your respective blogs, would you mind if I asked you a few questions to write something longer (as I really think it would make a very interesting story to follow)? (EDITED FOR REALLY EMBARRASSING TYPOS!)
  15. Docs, Please stop posting those splendid cheese photos. Specially when I'm reading you at work just before lunch. My colleagues can tell I'm slacking by the roars from my stomach. Mar
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