WHEN Dani Garcia became the youngest chef in Spain to receive a Michelin star at the tender age of 25, it was clear he was destined for greatness.
After 20 years of slaving in the kitchen, the 42-year-old Marbella wunderkind has won the highest culinary honour in the world.
The Michelin guide praised his ‘unique way of reinventing Andalucian gastronomy in a contemporary form’.
His Marbella-based restaurant at the Puente Romano Hotel was the only one in Spain or Portugal to be awarded a trio of stars – the highest accolade – in the 2019 Michelin Guide, announced at a glittering ceremony in Lisbon this month.
To celebrate his stellar success the Olive Press has rounded up 10 facts you might not know about the culinary maestro…
1. Home-grown in Marbella, Dani trained in Malaga at La Consula cookery school, formerly a villa where Ernest Hemingway spent his holidays.
2. While he has three Michelin stars he doesn’t even make Tripadvisor’s Top 100 for Marbella.
3. He won his first Michelin Star at Ronda’s Tragabuches restaurant at the age of 25.
4. He had a restaurant in New York called Manzanilla which survived for only one year, closing in 2014.
5. He caused controversy in 2015 when he created two special hamburgers for McDonalds, the Grand McExtrem Bibo and the Grand McExtrem Dani Garcia.
6. As well as three restaurants in Marbella and one in Madrid he opened the Deli Bar at Malaga airport in 2013.
7. He has become famous for playing with the concept of opposites – hot and cold, rough and smooth, salty and sweet. Dubbed ‘Contradicion’, it’s a play on two words: ‘contradiction’ and ‘with tradition’.
8. He’s been dating a Russian woman since splitting from his Spanish wife Aurora, with whom he has two teenage daughters.
9. He’s a massive fan of sneakers. “I adore them, I’m truly a fan of sneakers”.
10. His next adventure is in the middle east with Bibo Qatar, set to open next year.