Deep in the Atxondo valley, a small yet wonderful settlement in northern Spain’s Basque Country, one may come across Asador Extebarri, regarded by many as the world’s best gourmet grilling restaurant.
The restaurant is run by local grill maestro Victor Arguinzoniz and uses the grill as its only means of cooking. Together with technique and a very high level of ingredients, which come mainly from Victor’s own farms, the grill has earnt the restaurant international acclaim, one Michelin star and, in 2016, tenth position in the well-known classification of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.
The grill has such an important role in the Extebarri restaurant because all food, including fish, meat, vegetables and even caviar, is cooked on it alone. Victor uses various types of local wood depending on the type of dish to be prepared, in order to produce a variety of tastes.
Over the years, he has turned his kitchen into every griller’s kingdom and has made it in his own image: many of the tools used seem to have been designed by himself.
Just like for the Camino de Santiago, with the passing of time a real pilgrimage of the world’s gourmets has been created, all keen to taste the high level of cuisine combined with a cooking method unusual in a Michelin Star restaurant, and now, on account of Asador Extebarri, barbecue cuisine has reached new heights.
Atxondo, February 2017