Ferran Adria is widely considered one of the world’s greatest chefs – an international icon of gastronomy whose name is synonymous with virtuosity, innovation and Michelin-starred prestige.
This month, his unique cuisine is coming to London in the form of a landmark new exhibition at Somerset House.
Ferran Adria and The Art of Food is one of the world’s first retrospectives on Adria’s flagship restaurant, elBulli, which he led as head chef between 1987 and its closure in 2011 – a period that saw the Costa Brava venue earn its second and third Michelin stars.
Somerset House will be providing an exclusive look at what went on behind the scenes at Adria’s laboratory and research kitchen. With the cooperation of Generalitat de Catalunya, Institut Ramon Llull and Catalan brewer Estrella Damm, curators have gathered together an astonishing range of exhibits for visitors to feast their eyes on.
These include disassembled versions of famous elBulli dishes, showing the sometimes surprising ingredients on which Adria and his team regularly worked their magic. Exhibition-goers will also be able to take a peek at the handwritten notes and preliminary sketches Adria made before embarking on a new recipe, and they’ll see the original plasticine models that elBulli chefs modelled their food’s presentation on.
“Even though the restaurant of elBulli is now closed, the spirit of elBulli is still very much alive and this exhibition is one of the ways of keeping it so,” says Adria.
“I am delighted to be presenting it in London at the prestigious Somerset House – another creative hub which, like elBulli, always invites you to try something new.”
For fans of art and culture, Somerset House is one of the English capital’s biggest visitor attractions. Located between the Strand and the Thames, this stunning neoclassical building is home to permanent collections like the Courtauld Gallery and hosts a huge number of temporary events and exhibitions throughout the year.
It should prove easy to reach for those staying at The Montcalm London Marble Arch Hotel, being a stone’s throw from the Temple, Covent Garden, Charing Cross and Embankment tube stops.