Widely considered one of the most creative pastry chefs in the world, he currently lives in Bali, where he consults for the restaurant Ku De Ta, and oversees Willpowder, a website for specialty pastry products.
While you were staging at elBulli, were there any parts of mise–en-place or service, or any specific tasks that you particularly enjoyed? Any you disliked?
You know, I could probably recite my prep list there from memory twelve years later. I got to enjoy all of the preparation really, particularly the rolling out of nougatine plaques, which we were using for many garnishes that year, and making the air-bags for the tomato water sorbet snack. But I liked it all. One of my jobs was to take the trash out, and you know, there was a lot of trash at that place. Everyday Jose Mari and I would get in that little white truck and throw the garbage out. It’s not a job that most people get excited about, but I even liked doing that.
You staged in 1999, which was the last year that elBulli did two services a day. What was that like?
Two services a day, seven days a week. Every now and then we’d get a day off and Ruben Garcia (a fellow stagiaire, and today chef de cuisine at minibar, in Washington DC) and I would walk around the beach in Roses in a haze. Read the rest of this entry »