Josean Alija has devoted himself entirely to an experimental game in which he uses essences from the soil and its products – the most varied aromas, textures and flavours dominate his avant-garde style of cooking. ‘Aroma, beauty, texture and taste define an essential and personal cuisine’, summarises his approach. It is this extraordinary culinary devotion to everything earthen that led to his international recognition at a young age. For example, he received awards as best ‘Best Young Chef’ (2000) and ‘Best International Chef’ (2009), and the ‘Conceptual Innovation’ (2010) beside others, and finally in 2011 he was given his first Michelin star!
The young Spanish talent proves in an impressive way that skill alone is not enough – success is based on outlook. Josean Alija describes his mission this way: ‘My cooking is natural and I like the relationship it creates with what surrounds me. I enjoy interpreting the products and adapting to them, to distil their essence. I'm responsible for finding and selecting products as the starting point, for innovating by tracking the unexplored. This allows me to enjoy gastronomy; not forgetting our history but continuously evolving with total freedom’. In his very early years he observed master chefs of haute cuisine closely, and then cultivated his own cuisine. Paul Bocuse’s assessment of his cuisine: ‘It is one of the best I have encountered in my life‘.