Amelia by Paulo Airaudo, Voro, Smoked Room, and Iván Cerdeño earn two shining ovations, while Valencian chef Quique Dacosta reigned supreme.
In a year marked by Covid restrictions for the restaurant industry, Spain has obtained 31 new Michelin stars, to which we must add seven more in Portugal. In addition, four establishments obtained the second shine and we are left with no new additions to the Olympus of haute cuisine, with no new three-star restaurant.
The Michelin Guide 2022 for Spain and Portugal returned to the stage to celebrate the gala of the most prized awards in the field of gastronomy, with chefs from all over Spain and Portugal gathering at the Palau de las Artes in Valencia.
“Despite the complex situation of 2021, many young talents have emerged who defend their innovative and diverse gastronomic concepts with personality. A basic trend is prevailing in many establishments: that of giving maximum value to local products and traditions, sometimes boldly revisited,” said Gwendal Poullennec, International Director of the Michelin Guides.
“Our inspectors have particularly enjoyed preparing the 2022 selection because of the gastronomic momentum that the Iberian Peninsula is currently experiencing,” he added.
Palau de les Artes, Valencia
The 11 Spanish three-starred restaurants so far have maintained their level unchanged: Arzak, with three stars for three decades and Elena Arzak at the helm; Pedro Subijana’s Akelarre; Martín Berasategui; Berasategui’s Lasarte Barcelona, with Paolo Casagrande; Celler de Can Roca; Quique Dacosta; Eneko Atxa’s Azurmendi; Ángel León’s Aponiente; Jordi Cruz’s ABaC; Dabiz Muñoz’s DiverXo; and Jesús Sánchez’s Cenador de Amós.
These top restaurants (remember that the stars are for the place, not the chef) are the only ones in the whole peninsula, as the Portuguese culinary scene lacks the highest recognition. The last three Michelin stars was Cantabria’s Cenador de Amós, in the 2020 guide.
Four New Restaurants to Keep an Eye On
The four restaurants that stood out by achieving the second distinction were Amelia by Paulo Airaudo from San Sebastian, Iván Cerdeño from Toledo, Voro from Mallorca and Smoked Room from Madrid, owned by Dani García, who closed his restaurant in Málaga as soon as he received the third star. Now, occupying the space of Oscar Velasco’s Santceloni, he has won two stars in just six months, which is unusual.
“Diners who are lucky enough to sit at the bar or at one of the establishment’s three tables will appreciate the delicacy and audacity of the chef’s cuisine, which skilfully blends Basque gastronomy with culinary influences from Argentina, Italy and Japan in a particularly creative tasting menu,” said Paulo Airaudo, from Amelia.
Regarding Voro, the guide highlights that “thanks to a subtle play of textures and nuances, they offer a reinterpretation of timeless Mediterranean and Mallorcan recipes”. Of Iván Cerdeño from Toledo, the guide highlights a “cuisine that pays tribute to the products of La Mancha. With creative and innovative compositions”.
Finally, the young chef Massimiliano Delle Vedove, at the head of Smoked Room, “demonstrates mastery of charcoal cooking techniques, which particularly impressed our inspectors, who were delighted with the preparations with subtle touches from the grill”.
Quique Dacosta Reigns Supreme at the Michelin Gala
The renowned chef has renewed his three stars, the highest award, with his restaurant in Dénia, “Quique Dacosta”, and he has also inaugurated one in his new restaurant “Deesa” in Madrid.
Valencian chef Dacosta achieved the most stars in this edition of the Michelin Guide 2022. Dacosta has been able to renew his three stars for Quique Dacosta Restaurante, which is also the guide’s highest recognition, for his restaurant in Dénia.
In addition, Dacosta also achieved a Michelin star for his new venture Deessa, located in the Mandarin Oriental Ritz hotel in Madrid.