Ferran Adrià, chef and co-owner of Spain's famed elBulli restaurant, visited The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, New York in March of 2009 to present to the students and to receive the Chef of the Year Augie Award.
Chef Adria with CIA Students
On March 25, 2009, Adrià spent a day with students at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park. About 1,100 students came to hear the legendary chef speak about his culinary background and cooking philosophy. His presentation included an opportunity for students to ask questions of the man who is widely considered the best and most innovative chef in the world today.
After the discourse, Chef Adrià showed how he develops recipes with unexpected contrasts of flavor, temperature, and texture. He displayed his cooking style - which he calls "deconstructivist" - in a two-hour demonstration for the more than 1,300 students and faculty attending.
2009 Augie Winners
The 2009 Augie Award
The following day, Chef Adrià received the college's 2009 Augie™ Award as Chef of the Year during the annual CIA Leadership Awards dinner at Cipriani 42nd St. in New York City. Adrià, a native of Barcelona, has been head chef of elBulli for the past 22 years. The restaurant has been named the World's Best Restaurant four times in the last six years by England's Restaurant magazine.
A New Partnership
While Chef Adrià was with The Culinary Institute of America, they announced a new partnership with the Alícia Foundation and PRODECA, both based in Catalonia, to facilitate an exchange of culinary faculty, students, and experts.
Adrià, the Alícia Foundation Chairman, joined Dr. Tim Ryan, president of the CIA, the world's premier culinary college, and Joan Gené i Albesa and Fernando Bienert Serraclara, President and General Manager respectively of PRODECA (part of the Government of Catalonia), to sign the agreement. Also in attendance was top Spanish chef José Andrés.
The agreement will allow CIA faculty and students to study at the Alícia Foundation in Catalonia, a region in Spain that includes Barcelona and that has long been a leader with in world-class chefs and restaurants as well as its critically acclaimed wines, olive oils, and other foods. In addition to studying at the Alícia Foundation, visiting CIA students and faculty will be able to experience first-hand the top kitchens, markets, and producers of Catalan food and wine.
At the same time, the new agreement will fund a 2009-2010 program series of visiting guest chefs and other leaders in Catalan gastronomy at the New York and California campuses of the CIA. This program series will include instruction on the avant-garde Catalan cuisine that has dazzled the culinary world in recent years, as well as the rich traditional culinary heritage of the region.
The Alícia Foundation, based in Món Sant Benet near Barcelona, is a center of research devoted to the technological innovation in cooking, with a focus on promoting wider social access to good, healthy food. The foundation is funded by the Government of Catalonia and the Bank of Manresa.
Chef Ferran Adrià Cooking Demonstration (Flash video)
Demonstration, Part 1
Demonstration, Part 2
Demonstration, Part 3
Demonstration, Part 4
Demonstration, Part 5
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