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The “Chef del Mar” gets his second Michelin star

November 27, 2014 – 12:40 pm
Fish chef Angel Leon as seen on the website of his two-Michelin-star restaurant Aponiente in El Puerto de Santa Maria.

Fish chef Angel Leon as seen on the website of his two-Michelin-star restaurant Aponiente in El Puerto de Santa Maria.

Last week the Michelin Guide to Spain and Portugal 2015 was launched, with the announcement of the all-important stars.

Andalucia still has seven restaurants with one Michelin star each, largely concentrated along the coast – Choco in Cordoba; La Costa in El Ejido and Alejandro in Roquetas del Mar (Almeria), Abantal in Sevilla, El Lago and Esquina both in Marbella, and Jose Carlos Garcia in Malaga.

But the big news for the region’s gastronomic scene this year was that Aponiente, the experimental and highly innovative restaurant of chef Angel Leon, known as Chef del Mar, won its second star. El Puerto de Santa Maria, the port town where the restaurant is located, will now become a gourmet mecca.

Angel Leon in action with his restaurant team at gastronomy conference Andalucia Sabor in 2013.

Angel Leon in action with his restaurant team at gastronomy conference Andalucia Sabor in 2013.

Leon, who opened his restaurant in 2007 and won his first Michelin star in 2010, has long been advocating revolutionary new ways of cooking not just fish, but all kinds of marine products such as plankton. His signature dishes include fish sausage, a “pepper” made of crab and baby squid, navajas (razor clams) with capers and anchovies, oysters with plankton, and slow-roasted almadraba tuna.

Beetroot and cuttlefish-plankton.

Beetroot and cuttlefish-plankton.

This is the Michelin inspector’s review from the guide:

“Close your eyes and savour the full flavours of the sea at this restaurant, where chef Ángel León creates innovative cuisine that will certainly cause a stir. As a result of his outstanding skill, ingredients and techniques (marine plankton, bioluminescence etc), the traditional cuisine of Cádiz takes centre stage, reaching incredible heights of creativity.”

Sausage made of seafood.

Sausage made of seafood.

Watch the video of a delighted Angel Leon celebrating the good news.

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