Recently we interviewed Ángel García, the chef of Templo the restaurant where you can go to taste the most delicious cuts of meat in Alicante. Today we would like to give you more insight and to learn more about this excellent chef and this popular venue.
A BIT ABOUT ÁNGEL GARCÍA, THE MASTERMIND BEHIND TEMPLO
What was your background before Templo?
I worked in the hospitality industry as I started working at 16, juggling it with studies until I finished my business degree at 25. During those years, I worked in the horticultural export sector until I opened Templo.
What kind of cuisine do you produce? Do you consider yourself a bearer of a particular gastronomic style?
I consider Templo to be a product-driven cuisine, where we always strive to obtain the best products and respect them as much as possible.
When did your passion for meat develop?
I don’t exactly remember when my passion for meat began, as it’s something that starts very early. Additionally, while working in the horticultural sector, I traveled to many countries and always sought out the best available steak restaurants in each city. This heightened my interest in the world of meat even more than usual.
THE TEMPLE OF THE MOST PERFECT MEAT
With what ideas and perspectives did you inaugurate Templo in 2018?
The idea was to create a steak restaurant like no other in Spain, an elegant establishment focused on meats, where we make carnivorous customers happy by showcasing the raw cuts, carving them in front of the customers, and revealing our techniques.
What are your sources of inspiration?
I could say my inspiration comes from two sides. From my early bosses in the hospitality industry, I learned about work ethics, sacrifice, that business is above feelings, and that you have to fight every day for success. For the restaurant concept, I drew inspiration from places like Jacobs and Co (Toronto), Grinder Steakhouse (Montreal), and Gallaghers Steakhouse (New York). These were places I discovered while being involved in other sectors and they enamored me with their approach to working with meat.
Are there any dishes that distinguish you?
Having a very concise menu allows us to maintain consistently high-quality dishes that are also much-loved. It’s true that our focus is always on the meat. Thanks to the controlled aging system I developed, we refine the cuts to bring out the best in them. Many customers praise dishes like foie mi-cuit, cecina croquettes, pastrami duck magret, and our desserts.
What’s it like to own a restaurant while also being the heart of its kitchen?
It’s challenging because a successful business requires many hours of management and operation work. Despite having a business degree, my true passion is cooking, and there are days when I need to make an effort not to jump into the kitchen and start working with a computer, even if it means betraying my feelings.
What type of diners frequent Templo?
We have a diverse clientele, from young couples celebrating special occasions to middle-aged groups of friends treating themselves, business lunches, and couples seeking a delightful experience. What they all have in common is coming to enjoy a carnivorous experience that’s hard to find in many places.
THE CUISINE AND MENU AT TEMPLO
What are the most consumed cuts of meat?
Currently, the most consumed cut is the medium-aged Frisona beef ribeye, aged for 45 days or more, although demand for Angus and Rubia Gallega breeds has also grown significantly.
How was the pairing conceived and designed?
The restaurant’s sommelier, Antonio Boyero, has done an excellent job with a wine list of around 150 references that we are very proud of. Additionally, we try to offer each table a personalized experience based on the desired meat and their preferences, ensuring perfect wine pairing.
How does Templo’s gastronomic proposal differ from similar ones in the region?
Actually, I believe that even though others also sell meat, our proposal is completely different. We are one of the very few who age our meat. We are also the only ones who have a chamber that prevents mold development, resulting in a consistently clean meat flavor. Moreover, the service in the dining room makes dining at Templo a unique experience, as all staff have extensive product knowledge and we work with it right in front of the customer.
Do you think it’s good to vary the menu? Why?
With the changing seasons, we alter some dishes. However, we also procure unique cuts of beef that we age according to our menu to offer variety. We also bring in rare cuts of meat that wouldn’t be present on the menu due to their scarcity.
C/ Pirula Arderius, 7 Alicante