Bill Clinton and Barack Obama advisor Joseph Stiglitz is helping Ferran Adrià
Bill Clinton and Barack Obama advisor Joseph Stiglitz is helping Ferran Adrià

Ferran Adrià teams up with Barack Obama advisor

Spanish chef finally reveals plans for his foundation

Ferran Adrià has revealed that he’s to team up with Nobel Prize-winning global economist Joseph Stiglitz for his next project. The Spanish super chef is also in talks with Harvard University and MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) about his elBulli Foundation which opens in 2014. 

Stiglitz has advised President Barack Obama on America’s plans to rescue its finance industry even though the two have not always seen eye to eye. He also served under Bill Clinton between 1995-97 and with the World Bank. Stiglitz is on an advisory board of experts administering a fellowship programme that will bring up to 20 young cooks and researchers from all over the world to work in Adrià's experimental kitchen.

Telling the FT at the weekend about the plans, Adrià said: "Step by step we’ve been constructing a vision of what we want it to be." Work on the new campus will begin in January. It will be located in Cala Montjoi and will include the restaurant. The site has been designed by Catalan architect Enric Ruiz-Geli (we'll be posting a gallery of his previous work later today - it’s very unusual) and will be populated with zero-emission buildings housing an archive and conference rooms. 

When elBulli closed in July, blueprints on display showed a 'Ideatorium' with open chambers dedicated to concepts such as the "empathic tree experience." There will be a restaurant but it will be invite only. 

"Maybe we'll invite a group of journalists one night, and some high school students the next," Adrià said. "We could have a special dinner just for the world of art and another for Foundation sponsors." Due to the pioneering nature of the foundation, he said the meals would be even more experimental than anything served by elBulli. "Before we were pushing the limits but still working within the boundaries of a restaurant. We don't have those barriers anymore."

During the interview Adrià also revealed what he did in the days immediately after the closure of elBulli. “I spent five days in Alicante at the beach, then three days in Germany for the presentation of an elBulli documentary, 12 days in China giving talks, two days in Geneva to receive an award. If this is retirement, I would hate to be working!”

Meanwhile, Adrià’s_ The Family Meal_, is published at the end of this month. It’s a step-by-step guide to making the dishes that the staff at elBulli used to eat before or after service.  You can buy it here. To read the full FT article go here.