When I visited El Bulli in the summer of 2008, I was incredibly excited, but I have to admit that I was slightly disappointed. While I thought that the dishes were all beautiful pieces of art and that the technique was shockingly complex and interesting, I only thought that about 21 out of 32 dishes (65%) that I received really tasted great.
As a refresher, you can see the review, some history and photos of my July 2008 El Bulli experience here.
What did strike me on my first visit was the unbelievable setting, and how perfect it was, which is why when I returned a couple of weeks ago, that I made sure to secure a lunch reservation. There is something about sitting out on the Costa Brava, at the best restaurant in the world, while the sun is shining, that is pretty much perfect.
This time when I visited, though, something had changed. The dishes were as beautiful and as interesting as they were more than two years ago, but the food tasted so much better. I would say that on this visit that 33 out of around 37 of them (89%) tasted great. I now understand why people consider this to be the best restaurant in the world, and I will feel at peace when they close their doors at the end of the year.
I will not opine on this restaurant too much, as I literally work with the man who wrote the book on the subject, but we have put together a beautiful chronological slideshow of the entire meal for your viewing pleasure.