The 2023 Kitchen Dialogues(Diálogos de cocina), one of the most innovative meetings on the international gastronomic scene, was held on 13 and 14 March in the Basque Culinary Center. A tempting invitation to go on a journey, like Gulliver, with over 200 people from the sector. This journey took us through the world of gastronomy, but we had to come with an open mind.
Aquanaria has promoted these meetings for several years. Aquanaria’s sea bass are also travellers. They are caught fresh in the Atlantic off the coast of Gran Canaria every day and they travel to more than 24 countries all over the world. This fish, which has excellent culinary qualities, is served in many of the most famous restaurants in the world. The texture of its flesh and its clean flavour, with no unexpected nuances are the most valued qualities for chefs.
2023 KITCHEN DIALOGUES
The Kitchen Dialogues Congress was created in 2007. It is organised by Mugaritz (with chef Andoni Luis Aduriz at the head), Euro-Toques and the Basque Culinary Center, and is backed by other companies like Aquanaria. The aim of these conferences is to discuss aspects related to cooking and gastronomy from a different point of view. Debate, stir, motivate… This is the ultimate goal. Speakers aren’t all necessarily chefs, they also include artists, scientists, designers, sociologists, etc.
This year we had some very interesting people and speakers. They discussed extinction risks (food journalist,Dan Saladino, spoke about foods, seeds, etc. and Eugenio Monesma spoke about professions and traditions). They also discussed the role of women in gastronomy (chef Lucía Freitas and Marta Álvarez, farmer and one of her Amas da terra). One of the highlights of the congress was the talk with Andoni and David Muñoz about what haute cuisine is and what it does. The discussions continued with Vicky Arrels, Edorta Lamo and Samy Ali, who shared different points of view regarding whether haute cuisine and creative cuisine were the same thing these days, if a croqueta can be haute cuisine or if haute cuisine is only for the elite. One of the most popular presentations was by Iñaki Martinez de Albeniz, sociologist and teacher. Iñaki used a football comparison to make the audience think about the future of the sector, which she thinks is more concerned about the goal than the game. But the most beautiful moment had to be the tribute to Pedro Subijana, celebrating his career. All of his Akelarre team came to the BCC auditorium to applaud him.
AQUANARIA AT THE DIALOGUES
Of course, there was also time for food at these conferences. There was a special meal every day in the Basque Culinary Center, where external chefs came to serve their creations and university students cooked and served hot dishes There were also tastings by brand promoters and collaborators of the conferences.
We had the pleasure of welcoming Pedro Subijana, Elena Arzak, Hilario Arbelaitz, Jesús Sánchez Andoni Aduriz, Maca de Castro, Vicky Arrels, Jose Carlos Cappel and Julia Perez Lozano at our tasting table. They tasted the ceviche and nigiris prepared on the spot by our sushi man. We also served two hot dishes, which were prepared by the students: sea bass in wine sauce and sea bass in green pepper sauce. We even participated in the final dinner In Muka restaurant, where the chefs prepared a delicious sea bass crudo with a garum, EVOO, lemon and lemon rind vinaigrette.
We believe that watching, challenging, sharing, debating, seeing and dreaming are the pillars for growth, be it personal, business or sectoral.At Aquanaria, we know this well. It’s part of our story. Participating in this new edition of the kitchen dialogues was a great learning experience. We will continue to support more of these initiatives that add value to the sector. We are sure to be back in two years for more dialogue.