finally getting around to posting pictures from our meal at mugaritz in san sebastian, spain. the trip is now a blur, so i’m mostly relying on the photos to explain the meal. i recall it being a playful meal — as evidenced by the odd place cards we were given upon being sitting. (they say “150 minutes to submit — to feel embarassed, flustered, fed up, of suffering/ 150 minutes to revel — to feel, imagine, discover, contemplate). some things worked, and some things were just too strange for my prosaic palate. the service, a bit spotty — pleasant but at times not quite as seamlessly choreographed as at 3* michelin places. but really, one goes to mugaritz for their abundant creativity and quirky point of view.
the restaurant itself is located about a 20-30 minute drive from the tourist center of san sebastian. our cab driver seemed to know the way perfectly, even making a sharp turn into a seemingly unmarked street that hubs and i would have undoubtedly missed. having a driver who knows his way is definitely the way to go!
taste, smelling and playing with the aromas of our garden. yeah…call me old-fashioned but i didn’t quite get this. we were giving several strips of paper in little vials containing essences from their garden. we were supposed to smell the strips of paper and sometimes taste them. interesting…but not quite my cup of tea.
at this point, we started to get attacked by bugs…and well…rather than waiting for them to fetch us, we decided to move ourselves into the main dining room.
artichoke and sweet bread ragout, creamy kuzu bread. one of the more interesting dishes of the evening. they insist on serving it as soon as the bread, made out of japanese kuzu flour, is out of the oven. the other dishes on the menu are push backed to make for this dish. the bread itself tastes a bit like a chinese steamed bread, but the taste is a bit creamier and nuanced. pairs well with the artichoke and sweet bread ragout.
cured cheese, in it’s own rind, mushrooms and coastal herbs . . . our waiter asked us if the dish was cheese? we said it wasn’t and he said that indeed, it wasn’t so much cheese as cooked milk…not sure if there’s much of a difference…but that’s them being playful again.
shhhh. . . cat got your tongue! we were again asked what we thought the dish consisted of. after eating it, we said it tasted like beef (similar to beef jerky). our waiter then asked us what part of the cow . . . i said the tail, but turned out it was tongue . . . i suppose i should have guessed from the title.
bonito belly, grilled on its own skin. baby green peppers and almond paste.
sweet grain biscuits with anis and flowers
Aldura Aldea 20.
tel: 943 522 455
prix-fixe: 155 euros per person