Paco Morales

Sandía secada al sol con caballa marinada y praliné tostado de romesco
Paco Morales
Country: Spain
City: 46880 Bocairent (Valencia)
Address: Ctra. Onteniente-Villena, Km. 16.
(+34) 962355175
Closed: Sunday night, Monday and Tuesday
Price: 80/130 €
Tasting menu:: 52, 75 y 96 €

We repeated it ad nauseam: “Paco Morales’s cuisine aspires to reach the very top of gastronomy. He possesses the required palatal and intellectual talent, the requested erudition and the necessary will for it”. Regardless of the vicissitudes of the sector, related to the location of the restaurant and restaurant, and of the extremely deep crisis that hits the world of luxury and haute cuisine, he has professionally already reached that summit.
Creativity and perfection, perfection and creativity, proposed in an unbeatable combination. The chef is in an auspicious state of infallibility. Every construction is amazing and is the fruits of prodigious, fluid and wise imagination. Maturity squared. There is no intention of impacting the guest at all, no shrillness, no excessive liberty… Paco’s work is all harmony, infinite harmony. Emotional, palatal and technical virtuosity. Excellence.
The chef has already defined a personal, unprecedented style that has got some influences that his talent and originality will surely make vanish. Each construction hides a personal idea, a deep intellectual reflection. The cook’s identity appears through essential displays that are full of fantasy and colours. Pure, neat, immaculate, –always– refined, and –we repeat it– excellent flavours that follow a naturalist philosophy using avant-garde techniques to glorify nature and the sublime raw materials. Although the proposals ooze with sharp creativity and the deep contents are not easy to assimilate, his cuisine is more accessible than others which are involved with art. The strength of the main ingredients –pure delights–, the naturality all the components are displayed with as well as their pertinent combination can contribute to involve the guest more deeply into the experience.
Except the famous cod in pastry with spring onion, lentils and crunchy belly pork, which is beyond times and tastes, all the proposals are new. Here are the most outstanding ones. The monumental oyster with raw sheep milk dots, lamb essence, herbs pesto, spicy croutons and cod jelly medallion placed in the centre of the seafood is synonymous with essential and majestic visual show brimming with magic touches that don’t affect the main ingredient at all. Who can do better without altering any aspect of the purity and the oceanity of the main character? Another masterpiece is called “The market in the plate”: a new green and vegetal proposal that is really ingenious from all points of view: fantasy, naturality, dietetics, divertimento, colours; vegetables, fruit, herbs, sprouts,… over translucent tomato sauce.

Here we go with the most brilliant dishes proposed in 2012. Never before had the heart of lettuce had such a personality and so much historical memory in a haute cuisine sculptural salad: crunchy and pure, covered with red pepper gelatine with pieces of oily anchovy and mint leaves. Another great expression of creative green salad is the exquisite carpaccio of green figs served with their leaves’ juice in two consistencies (blended and creamy) together with blue cheese powder. 10/10. In the same line, but a bit less stunning, we find some tender spinach with frozen Manchego cheese and some cream of burnt young garlic cream. And here is another stratospheric vegetal dish Paco made us used to: semi-sundried mushrooms seasoned with organic egg and served with grilled aubergine purée and spring garlic. After so much lightness, it is time for some gourmand proposals: raw baby beans with sautéed baby cuttlefish covered with translucent slices of Iberian pork lain over some meat stock; a composition that brims with clear flavours. And there goes another succulent and meaty feat: crystallized suckling lamb sweetbreads over toasted onion stock with a hint of Iberian pork, garnished with ginger and thyme oil, among others. And what can we say about the dehydrated tomatoes, almost dry, proposed with their frozen juice, almond cream and lemon balm. Or about the poached tuna, swimming into some juice made with its bones, served with tubers, which represents a very complex vision of a popular recipe. As usual, the top quality roasted pigeon turns to be colossal: cooked using the best technique, it is proposed with velvety anchovies and their crunchy roe. And in order to avoid any doubt about the qualification, here are three outstanding desserts: local flowers with beet, red berries and liquorice; baked pumpkin pie with its seeds; and lemon ice cream with toasted almonds praliné and rosemary flowers.

Paco’s cuisine is definitely committed and idealistic proyected in the history.