Day forty: Eduardo’s Road To Fitness

I think I like the chap behind the El Bulli dining experience. It is arguably Catalunya’s most talked about restaurant; indeed some say it is the finest restaurant on this planet. It is a venue that offers kinky gastronomists an orgy of taste sensations.  The wine list alone will send an oenophile into rapturous delight with a choice of over fifteen hundred different wines.

The man behind the Michelin three star restaurant, El Bulli, is Ferran Adrià Acosta and I think he has a sense of humour. I was looking at some of the dishes he has prepared in the past, with a view to some day treating my wife to a meal at the restaurant. I scanned the menu looking at the dishes that my wife would like. For she falls under the category of pseudo-vegetarian – happy to eat chicken breast or a Dover Sole but aghast at the thought of charcoal-oil flavoured lambs’ brains.

I had a look at some fish based dishes, thinking she would be happy with those.  How about some monkfish? Pretty yummy, it’s a white fish, so she should like that.

“Monkfish, potatoes, garlic shoots and veal trotters in saffron.” Well that’s done it.  There is not an ice-cube’s chance in hell she’d eat veal trotters. So I ditched the fish idea and thought a vegetable dish would be safer.

How about beans? You can’t go wrong with beans.  I am sure it is in the ‘how to eat out if you are a vegetarian handbook’.  Choose beans. Nice safe choice.

There you go again, the veal sweetbreads.  Designed to put a steak through the heart of an artichoke-loving vegetarian. This Ferran Adria Acosta chap definitely has a sense of humour.

I did not give up and carried on searching through the incredible online menu. I discovered a few more dishes; indeed there are many that I would love to try.

  • Red mullet salad with baby octopus tentacles, cabbage raviolo, pig’s ear and anchovy vinaigrette
  • Confit of cod with beans and pig’s snout and ear

Of course there are dishes that Rosie would eat, dishes that did not contain sweetbreads or pig’s ears so I had a look at the map to figure out where the El Bulli restaurant was located.

The El Bulli restaurant is situated about one hundred and fifty kilometres up the coast, in a town called Roses.

Yesterday I had planned to do a long bike ride, heading up the coast towards Roses but, in the same way that the pig’s snout tucked beneath the cod and beans would shock my wife, it rained, shocking me, for it is the first proper rain I have seen since I have been here in Barcelona. It absolutely poured, battering the windows and setting off car alarms in the street below.  The bike ride was a non-starter.

Instead I waited until it had dried up, when the clouds reluctantly lifted themselves off the mountains and the air had cleared.

I decided to go for a thirty-minute run, up into the hills, past the monastery, taking one of the wide trails, looping back around the back of the ruins before climbing up to the cross at the top of the hill.

I tried hard yesterday, pushing myself on the ascents and catching my breath on the descents, ready for the next climb where I’d push hard again.

I thought about the El Bulli restaurant and wondered if I should try to book a table.  I am told you have to book almost a year in advance.  By then, I will have saved enough money to afford one of their fabulous bottles of wine and the confit of cod with beans and pig’s snout and ear.

Until then I shall make do with my culinary adventure that is noodles with ham, egg and chilli.  I wonder if Ferran Adrià Acosta would find that funny? I know for sure my wife will not eat it so am guessing Ferran probably would.

Noodles with a sense of humour

Noodles with a sense of humour


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