Phaidon has announced a major book deal with Spanish chef Ferran Adrià: a seven-volume elBulli encyclopedia of sorts called elBulli 2005-2011. The book will condense the now-shuttered restaurant's famous catalogs, and will contain over 750 recipes, 2,720 pages, 1,400 photos. The first six volumes will contain the complete catalogs while the last will be the story of elBulli and its creative process, and will be called "Evolutionary Analysis." Oh, and the whole thing will cost $625. (Hey, for that price, you only got five volumes in Modernist Cuisine.)
This is the first time the catalogs from these years have been compiled, although the years 1998-2002 were published in a set in 2005. The books will be published March 3, 2014 (pre-order here). Below, photos from the announcement event, two video previews and a press release. All young chefs that missed your chance to stage at elBulli, here's your next best thing.
Video: elBulli 2005-2011
Video: Ferran Adrià Sees elBulli 2005-2011 For the First Time
elBulli 2005–2011 A Journey Inside the Creative Process of the World's Greatest Chef Unprecedented 7-volume Set Documenting Ferran Adrià's Most Creative and Prolific Years
Publication and Global Author Tour in March 2014 Deep in Spanish Catalonia, a region known for nurturing the creative genius of the likes of Gaudi, and Picasso, overlooking the bay of Cala Montjoi, sits the gastronomic mecca elBulli. Opening the restaurant for only six months every year, Ferran Adrià and his creative team decamped to the elBulli taller (workshop) in Barcelona for the remainder. There they spent thousands of hours experimenting, innovating and developing entirely new menus to delight and surprise diners in the upcoming season. The advances of the elBulli creative team have influenced restaurants and chefs around the world and have spurred an entirely new way of thinking about cuisine.
After shuttering his restaurant to the public in 2011 to begin its conversion to the elBulli foundation, a think tank for creativity across the arts, Ferran and his team have dedicated themselves to pouring through the extensive elBulli archives to document and analyze their creative output. The result is elBulli 2005–2011 (Phaidon, March 3, 2014, $625 / £425 / €525 / $CAN 625 / $AUS725), the first and only complete record of elBulli's final and most innovative years.
elBulli 2005–2011 captures a vital moment in culinary history, when Ferran shifted the way cuisine is codified and altered the way we think about the creative process. With one volume for each of the seven seasons the restaurant was open between 2005 and 2011, the collection features each of the over 750 recipes created during the period with texts written, edited and extensively tested by Ferran and his team.
Each of the first six volumes comprises a catalogue of color photographs for each dish developed in the corresponding season accompanied by detailed recipes explaining how to create every component. There are notes on hard to find ingredients, techniques, finishing and presentation. Following elBulli's unique menu structure, the recipes are divided by courses: cocktails, snacks, tapas, predesserts, desserts and morphings.
The seventh volume, Evolutionary Analysis, focuses on the creative evolution of the restaurant, tracking key discoveries and products, and examining the influences and creative methods that were prominent during each of elBulli's seasons. Utilizing and explaining the unique system of color-coding and symbols that Adrià developed in his Barcelona lab, the volume introduces readers to the language of elBulli's creative team.
The system offers a navigational tool with which to reference the other six volumes and a window through which to view how all the processes combined to drive the cuisine at elBulli forward.
Having been awarded the title of best restaurant in the world five times, experiencing the creativity and innovations that established chef Ferran Adrià's kitchen at the avant garde of cuisine was always a difficult task. Despite nearly two million annual requests for tables, the restaurant only accommodated 8,000 diners each season.
Now, for the first time, the comprehensive volumes of elBulli 2005–2011 will allow anyone with an interest in the creative process and modern gastronomy an exclusive opportunity to uncover the secrets of the world's most innovative kitchen.