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A visual tour of El Bulli Imitació, Matt Kantor’s epic 22-course homage to Ferran Adrià

These parmesan “marshmallows” are actually made of gelatine and olive oil (Image: Renée Suen)

If imitation is the greatest form of flattery, then Ferran Adrià—chef and co-owner of the now shuttered El Bulli, a restaurant on Catalonia’s Costa Brava that reigned as the World’s Best for many years—must be feeling the love right now. Since his landmark restaurant closed this summer, a number of chefs have been conducting various tributes, including Matt Kantor of Little Kitchen and Secret Pickle Supper Club, who hosted a three-night El Bulli-based menu at The Cookbook Store. The El Bulli Imitació menu came in at an impressive 22-courses—including snacks, tapas, main plates, desserts and “morphs” —spanning over two decades of the restaurant’s history. The four-and-a-half-hour affair was also the maiden voyage of The Cookbook Store’s brand new kitchen studio, a 29-year dream of store manager Alison Fryer (it also doubles as a showroom for home renovation outfit Rosemill Development Inc., which built the kitchen). Kantor told us he hoped to inspire diners to think of ordinary foods in a new light. “It was fun, tiring and frustrating, but worth it,” he said. “I wanted everything to be perfect. I think we did a pretty good job.” After the jump, our slideshow with pictures of each dish and some of the machines behind them, along with a few shots of the appreciative crowd.

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