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Empire of Kike Dacosta.

So that you don’t have the feeling that I want to empty your wallets with my notes, let’s talk in conclusion about whether a good kitchen is always too expensive. Not really. There are two ways to go to high-quality, but inexpensive food. The first way, so to speak, from below: to improve the quality of simple and traditional dishes. This way goes hamburgeries in fashion with “sort of” hamburgers. A worthy path, but now it is not particularly interesting to us.

The second path is the path “from above”: adaptation of the achievements of haute cuisine and creation of more democratic concepts with cool food. This path reflects the global trend: Mars bars created chocolate for everyone, Swarovski jewelry – diamonds for everyone. Of course, both Mars chocolate and Swarovski diamonds are not quite real, but they are of excellent quality, competent technologists and designers worked on their creation.

Joel Robuchon went the same way, opening his Atelier as a democratic younger brother of his restaurant. The Adria brothers have created a whole chain of restaurant-bars in Barcelona, ​​starting with the Tickets Bar. In Valencia, Kike Dacosta opened three establishments at once, essentially with the same goal: to sell high-quality food at “human” prices. Firstly, he transferred the El Poblet restaurant to Valencia (the restaurant in Denia continues to operate, but under the name of Kike Dacosta and the menu now costs 210 euros), where you can try the daily menu for 58 euros. Secondly, he opened two restaurants, where a menu of a large number of dishes starts from 15 euros: Vuelve Carolina (works directly door-to-door with the El Poblet restaurant) and Mercatbar nearby.

Of course, Kike Dacosta only oversees the kitchen, but you will find many of his hits in these restaurants. And, of course, he does not work alone, the whole team works: the cook El Poblet, who in 2013 received his first Michelin star, Luis Valls, Teresa Perez and Manuela Romeralo, who set the work of the hall and the wine cellar. We spent time with pleasure in both Vuelve Carolina and Mercatbare – places not for snobs, but with competent cuisine, a fun atmosphere and modern design. Recently, a “Peruvian menu” has been operating in these restaurants, which the Peruvian Omar Malpartida has set for Kike Dacosta. His cuisine Kike Dacosta appreciated in Madrid (Tiradito). My wife and I were very pleased with another coincidence of tastes with Kike Dacosta, because on our last visit to Madrid we practically settled for two days in the Tiradito restaurant, having tried all the menus there, but about this some other time. After all, the world of restaurants has no boundaries and limits.

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