El Bulli closing?

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rbg
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El Bulli closing?

Post by rbg » Tue 26 Jan 2010 19:07

It seems for 2012 and 2013 anyway :

http://www.lindependant.com/articles/20 ... 118287.php

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Post by Kate » Tue 26 Jan 2010 19:28

Have to say I have two lots of friends who have been there independantly and though impressed with the setting and service, they both said that they food just wasn't their 'tasse de thé'

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Post by john » Tue 26 Jan 2010 21:42

I have to say that for the 95+% of us who are on some sort of budget,this news is completely irrelevant in practice!

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Post by mpprh » Tue 26 Jan 2010 21:44

I guess the economy means that things have changed.

I worked in the motor trade and can remember when buyers walked away from previously paid deposits of £ 25,000 on a Rolls-Royce because its used value had collapsed (and there were no retail buyers !). The waiting list went from a proud 24 months to around 30 secs.

Bulli must be in the same marketplace ?

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Post by Rivesaltes Johnny » Tue 26 Jan 2010 21:59

http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/ ... lli-closed

This makes an interesting read.

What I find amazing is the numbers... 2 million people apply for 8000 places. I would love to go but guess will have to wait a little longer.

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Post by rbg » Tue 26 Jan 2010 22:24

john wrote:I have to say that for the 95+% of us who are on some sort of budget,this news is completely irrelevant in practice!
Of course it is John. Just thought it would be interesting to know that the restaurant deemed as the "best in the world" , on our very own doorstep, is closing for a period. Sigh ( is there a smiley for sigh?)

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Post by graham34 » Wed 27 Jan 2010 10:15

mpprh wrote:I guess the economy means that things have changed.

I worked in the motor trade and can remember when buyers walked away from previously paid deposits of £ 25,000 on a Rolls-Royce because its used value had collapsed (and there were no retail buyers !). The waiting list went from a proud 24 months to around 30 secs.

Bulli must be in the same marketplace ?
El Bulli has not had a problem booking out months, even a season, ahead for over 10 years so this closure will have nothing to do with the current economy. Went once in 1995 (now 15 years, crikes) and didn't feel a massive pull to go there again, but his influence on other chefs has been enormous.

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Post by john » Wed 27 Jan 2010 14:41

graham34 wrote:Went once in 1995 (now 15 years, crikes) and didn't feel a massive pull to go there again, .
I'd be interested in what you mean by that Graham.

Were you not that impressed? Was the unconventional style of cooking not to your taste? Did you not consider it VFM ?

It's interesting that the food police in the flashy mags tend to imply that somehow you are not serious about food if you don't go to these temples of gastronomy,or at least do not have the "ambition" to go there.

Frankly,I have absolutely zero interest in visiting EL Bulli,nor any of the overpriced imitators it has spawned. Even if I had limitless supplies of money to spend.

Presumably back in 1995,there wasn't the hype about it that there is now,though it was at the tail end of the "less is more" school of eating that some (and I'm not suggesting you!) fell for.

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Post by graham34 » Wed 27 Jan 2010 19:18

john wrote:.......

Were you not that impressed? Was the unconventional style of cooking not to your taste? Did you not consider it VFM ?
It was thought provoking at the time and impressive - partly because it wasn't that well know then so didn't carry any expectations. The location at the end of a dirt track with a cove virtually to itself was surprising.
Looking at my notes from the time there were a mere 16 courses (far more these days apparently). A few were excellent relatively conventional dishes - langoustines, quail and imaginative desserts. There were also things like baby food style vegetable purées and ice cream made from chicken stock - novel but no more, as were the foams and hot/frozen combinations with some dishes.

VFM - yes when compared to its French peers at the time.

To answer your question, the conventional dishes were excellent and I wished a few more appeared.

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Post by Allan » Wed 27 Jan 2010 23:04

Well I for one am gutted, I found dinner at El Bulli a fantastic experience that I would love to repeat.

I have my name down along with everyone else this year and live in hope of a reservation.

It isn't widely known but Ferran Adria has another restaurant at the El Bulli hotel near Seville, we will certainly be heading there this year.

http://www.elbullihotel.com/benazuzaweb_eng.html

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Post by john » Thu 28 Jan 2010 09:47

graham34 wrote:
john wrote:.......

Were you not that impressed? Was the unconventional style of cooking not to your taste? Did you not consider it VFM ?
It was thought provoking at the time and impressive - partly because it wasn't that well know then so didn't carry any expectations. The location at the end of a dirt track with a cove virtually to itself was surprising.
Looking at my notes from the time there were a mere 16 courses (far more these days apparently). A few were excellent relatively conventional dishes - langoustines, quail and imaginative desserts. There were also things like baby food style vegetable purées and ice cream made from chicken stock - novel but no more, as were the foams and hot/frozen combinations with some dishes.

VFM - yes when compared to its French peers at the time.

To answer your question, the conventional dishes were excellent and I wished a few more appeared.
Thanks Graham for your full and frank answer. It is a very fair assessment of a meal that took place,as you say fifteen years ago.I guess ,like many folk, you appreciate good food done in the conventional way,but like me,don't really fancy loads of foam,and weird stuff cooked in weird ways with lots of weird chemicals/gases. There will be those who think that view is "unadventurous" or "closed minded",but,there we are.

I concede that I naturally tend to rail against anything that has a "name" or I consider overpriced or hyped,but that is a separate issue altogether.

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Post by Santiago » Sat 13 Feb 2010 11:31

It now sounds as though it will be closing for good after the next season.

http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com/ ... rmanently/

Hard to believe a restaurant like that can lose so much money, but I guess that depends how much the head chef was paid :wink:

Personally I think these kind of restaurants offer diners something completely different from traditional food, well cooked (which I feel I can achieve at home). They offer inspiration, insights and an unforgettable experience for foodies.
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Post by john » Sat 13 Feb 2010 12:47

Santiago wrote: Hard to believe a restaurant like that can lose so much money, but I guess that depends how much the head chef was paid :wink:

Personally I think these kind of restaurants offer diners something completely different from traditional food, well cooked (which I feel I can achieve at home). They offer inspiration, insights and an unforgettable experience for foodies.
Yes,Santiago,for a place that charges so much, to lose money smacks of mismanagement on a stunning level.

I guess these types of places appeal to three distinct groups:

1, As you say, foodies/food police, in search of the latest gimmick.
2, The "money's no object" brigade
3, The sort who like to name drop and boast to their friends that they've been,even if they can't really afford it.

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Post by Allan » Sat 13 Feb 2010 13:45

john wrote:
Yes,Santiago,for a place that charges so much, to lose money smacks of mismanagement on a stunning level.
I think you are wrong John.

We have always been amazed that El Bulli's prices are so low. We got 31 courses in stunning surroundings with each couse a marvelous taste experience. I have paid more for a 3 course meal in London,Bruges, Paris and a host of other places. There wine list also is better value than any ofther Michelin starred restaurant that I have been to.

Clearly they could charge loads more if they wished, they only satisfy a fraction of their requests for tables. They make their money from books consultancy,media appearances etc all of which are fuelled by the hype surrounding the restaurant. If they charged more they would be regarded as elitist and irrelevant in the food world. The restaurant is a small loss leader in the overall business.

The mistake is to think of it as a meal, it is a taste experience that is almost unique.

I don't love the place because of bragging rights and I certainly don't feel that money is no object; I just think the whole experience is exceptional.

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Post by john » Sat 13 Feb 2010 14:35

Allan wrote:[I have paid more for a 3 course meal in London,Bruges, Paris and a host of other places. There wine list also is better value than any ofther Michelin starred restaurant that I have been to.

Clearly they could charge loads more if they wished, they only satisfy a fraction of their requests for tables. The mistake is to think of it as a meal, it is a taste experience that is almost unique.

I don't love the place because of bragging rights and I certainly don't feel that money is no object; I just think the whole experience is exceptional.
You clearly have a penchant for expensive restaurants Allan. Nothing wrong with that. You choose how to spend your own money. But,in my experience you don't need to spend extraordinary sums of money to eat exceptionally well in any of the cities you mention.

Also ,I note that at no point do you say how much the bill was for your "exceptional" El Bulli experience !

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Post by cufc » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:22

31 COURSES? WHY? Am I being a real pleb here? I'd have thought 5 were quite sufficient. Do they come in egg cups? Or on cornflakes?

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Post by thumbelina » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:25

Someone told me (or I saw on TV, can't remember which) that one of the courses was one solitary ripe cherry coated in goose fat.

So yes, they do pretty much come in egg cups or on cornflakes. :D :D :D

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Post by Allan » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:29

john wrote: You clearly have a penchant for expensive restaurants Allan. Nothing wrong with that. You choose how to spend your own money. But,in my experience you don't need to spend extraordinary sums of money to eat exceptionally well in any of the cities you mention.

Also ,I note that at no point do you say how much the bill was for your "exceptional" El Bulli experience !
As I recall John it was €165 a head plus wine.

No I don't have a penchant for expensive restaurants, I have a penchant for great food experiences and of course you don't have to spend anything like that for a good meal anywhere in the world.

You are still missing the point, it isn't just about having something to eat, it's about trying a unique experience and experiencing the skills of a chef at the top of his profession.

You could go and watch a perfectly good Opera in Batley Town Hall but the experience and the price wouldn't compare with La Scala or the ROH.

Other 3 star restaurants typically charge €100 for one course, so yes €165 for 31 is a fantastic bargain.

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Post by john » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:32

I see the picture Allan.

But it's all academic,as far as I'm concerned. I don't want 31 courses,no matter how good they are,and I can't afford to spend over 400 € on a meal for two.

End of.

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Post by cufc » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:40

Well I think that cost is obscene. Someone is taking the mick and a lot of people with FAR too much money are falling for it. A cherry in goose fat? Sounds more like an accident than a meal!!

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Post by john » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:48

That's the view from most people,I believe,cufc. There is no way that I'd ever call that sort of cost "a bargain".

But,as I say,it's Allan's prerogative to spend his money as he feels fit;

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Post by cufc » Sat 13 Feb 2010 15:55

I agree, John, but I also think some people must have too much money or some odd priorities.

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Post by thumbelina » Sat 13 Feb 2010 16:12

Don't see why, cufc.

It would probably cost you and John more than 165€ to fly back to England to watch a football match.
This trip to Wembley's gonna cost a fortune.
That's something that you're passionate about.

If Allan is passionate about food and wine and different food experiences, then that is HIS choice.

For all we know, that may be his one dining experience of the year and he has saved up to be able to do it.

Horses for courses, I think.

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Post by cufc » Sat 13 Feb 2010 16:33

Touchee!

Mind you the trip to Wembley will be once in a LIFETIME as a Carlisle supporter!

But you make a good point. Having said that my trip will also last a week and involve seeing family and friends for the first time since we came over in September.

But, you DO make a good point.

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Post by thumbelina » Sat 13 Feb 2010 16:39

cufc wrote:
Mind you the trip to Wembley will be once in a LIFETIME as a Carlisle supporter!
:D :D :D :D

Don't be so negative!

Of COURSE, it won't!!! :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Post by john » Sat 13 Feb 2010 17:02

I see what you are saying,thumbs,and I guess that's what I meant. But,unless it was an emergency I'd never spend 200 Eur a head on a trip back to see football. Like cufc,I tie it in with other things,and would not entertain spending that much.

I cannot afford it. Allan is lucky he can spend such sums on a meal.

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El Bulli

Post by Sue » Sat 13 Feb 2010 17:23

Im sorry but Alan must have some connection with the restaurant. I would not consider paying a quarter of that for a meal and if I did it would have to be darned good and include the wine! Not only wouldnty I pay it but more to the point I cant afford it. What a waste of money.
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Post by cufc » Sat 13 Feb 2010 17:38

He might be lucky to be able to afford it but is he sensible/wise to even think of PAYING it?

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Post by thumbelina » Sat 13 Feb 2010 17:50

WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE????????????????????


EACH TO THEIR OWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What a waste of money


In YOUR opinion!


EACH TO THEIR OWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


If he can afford it - good luck to him! He's earned the money he should be able to spend it how he wants!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



:shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:

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Post by polremy » Sat 13 Feb 2010 18:39

Exactement, Thumbers!

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