09 Sep Andoni Aduriz, one of the most influential chefs in the world: "La Palma is an island for learning; I say this with joy".
Andoni Luis Aduriz is considered one of the most influential chefs of our time. He has two Michelin stars, but that is not all. He is a visionary and a rebel behind the cooker who, with Mugaritz, much more than a restaurant, has become an international reference as a synonym for R&D.
Aduriz has been in La Palma over the last few days. Thanks to the Saborea La Palma project, which is managed by the public company Sodepal, he has been able to get to know the products, producers, chefs, restaurants and cuisine of the island. He also visited natural spots with great tourist potential. He was accompanied by the winning couple of "Tapas por La Palma", an initiative of Saborea España, and Maire Modrego, coordinator of Eurotoques.
Aduriz acknowledged that "I came to La Palma with a very relaxed perspective, very calm, in the sense that if things happened that were going to interest me, fine; and if they didn't happen, then nothing happened either. But the reality is that if I have to give a headline to this trip, it would be that I leave La Palma full of learning. I don't say that as a cliché. I say it with joy".
The prestigious chef said that "I have felt very ignorant at times. I have come across inspiring producers, with products that I didn't know about and that, if I had come across them on the other side of the world, I would have said how good it is that this exists. I have come across some historic rums, some cheeses made from a native breed of palm tree, I have come across people full of dreams... I have remembered how ignorant I am, and that is a gift".
Aduriz made special emphasis on the fact that "I'm leaving full of encouragement, with a sense of peace. I have the feeling that nobody wanted to sell me anything. They have simply told me about their life, what they do, their lifestyle. La Palma is a territory that within its dimension is full of gifts. I have been under a waterfall. I have encountered many different landscapes in a small space. Too many things have happened to me! I have eaten the scalded gofio that is able to make me come back to La Palma. I want to come back and eat that same gofio. Many things have happened to me that I didn't expect".
"La Palma has been an island of learning. It is the island that has reunited me with illusions and has dismantled that armour that one carries around the world because one thinks one is so clever," he said.
For her part, the CEO of Sodepal and head of Economic Promotion on the island, Raquel Díaz, thanked Saborea España for the development of the solidarity initiative "Tapas por La Palma" in favour of the people affected by the volcano, "which has made it possible to raise funds for families who lost their homes and even their livelihoods".
This action "also gave us the opportunity to receive the winning couple of the trip to La Palma, whom we congratulate, and one of the most renowned chefs in the world, who was able to see and experience first-hand the potential of our island in the world of gastronomy".
Raquel Díaz stressed that "we have a very powerful product story, talented restaurant professionals, with a diversified cuisine, factors capable of generating differentiated gastronomic experiences with high added value... sometimes we just need to believe in what we have".
By the way, the Councillor believes that "Aduriz's visit and, above all, his messages, also serve to reaffirm what we have been defending from Saborea La Palma in recent years, and that is that our island undoubtedly has a gastronomic potential full of opportunities, capable of conquering even the most demanding palates".
Díaz thanked the teachers of the PFAE Sabor Saucero-Juvenil for their collaboration in the meeting between Andoni Luis Aduriz and a representation of chefs from La Palma.
For his part, the Councillor for Tourism, Raúl Camacho, said that "La Palma must take advantage of each of its subsectors to position itself in the tourist market. We are an island of trails, nature, extraordinary landscapes, active leisure, but also of gastronomy, exclusive products and highly talented professionals that thanks to Saborea La Palma and Sodepal we are positioning".
Camacho believes that Aduriz's visit "gives us visibility and, above all, allows us to reinforce the message that we maintain from the island government of the importance of our primary sector and gastronomy as tools for attracting tourists".