Elena Arzak: a snapshot of her experience

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 18th November 2014
Elena Arzak In celebration of our featured chef Elena Arzak we've taken a look at the history of the three Michelin star restaurant Arzak in San Sebastian, Elena’s father Juan Mari Arzak and now we’re looking at who she has worked with, including Michel Troisgros and Ferran Adrià. Having finished studying hotel management at the age of 20, Elena was encouraged by her father to gain further experience in restaurants around the world. She set her sights on stages in successful restaurants that were run well - starting with a classic from England. Michel Roux Post-studies, she headed to England in 1989 to work at Le Gavroche, the Mayfair, London restaurant opened by Michel and Albert Roux in 1967, which had three Michelin stars at the time. Here she worked alongside Michel Roux Jr, who was also in training, for six months. Le Gavroche Pierre and Michel Troisgrois After this she trained at Le Maison Troisgros, the legendary restaurant of father Pierre and son Michel Troisgros in Roanne, France which helped pioneer the nouvelle cuisine movement of the late 1960s and 70s. Alain Dutournier Following this she worked with Alain Dutournier at his two Michelin starred Carré des Feuillants in Paris. Alain Ducasse A short time was spent at Le Louis XV in Montecarlo, a three Michelin starred French restaurant run by Alain Ducasse. It is located inside the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo, and achieved its Michelin stars after just 33 months. Ferran AdriaFerran Adrià She also did a stage at Ferran Adrià’s three Michelin starred elBulli in Roses, Spain, voted world’s best restaurant five times by Restaurant magazine. "She's like family," said Ferran Adrià, about Elena. "She didn't work for me. She came to my home and saw me work." Elena herself said the restaurant changed her perception towards cooking with its creativity. Ezio Santin Antica Ostería del Ponte, Ezio Santin’s restaurant in the province of Milan, Italy, also saw a visit from Elena. Santin famously gave back his two Michelin stars in 2009, deciding he no longer needed to rely on them to be successful. Pierre Gagnaire Elena finished off this stage of her career with Pierre Gagnaire at his flagship restaurant in Hotel Balzac, Paris, before returning home to join her father’s restaurant Arzak. By Vera Kleinken / Stuart Armstrong Have you eaten at restaurant Arzak? Let us know over on @canteentweets Be sure to check out our featured chef videos with Elena:

Elena and Juan Mari Arzak on the origins of Arzak restaurant

Elena Arzak talks her early years and her father, Juan Mari Arzak

With Arzak being one of many three star restaurants in Spain we'll be letting you know if anyone else is to join the ranks, as the new Michelin Guide Spain comes out this week.

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 18th November 2014

Elena Arzak: a snapshot of her experience