A whole range of the most highly varied disciplines coexist in Heart Ibiza: the artistic creativity and magic of Cirque du Soleil along with styles of cooking from all over the world under the unique label of Ferran and Albert Adrià.
Heart Ibiza has been conceived to be experienced in a different way every day. It’s all continuously evolving; gastronomic innovations on a daily basis along with different performances and visual stimuli as well as impromptu musical “happenings” create a world of sensations that varies as the evening progresses into the early hours of the morning.
Albert was kind enough to make time in his busy schedule to answer a few questions for the readers of Ibiza Style.
Are you happy with the way things have gone so far?
Ibiza is a special place and it takes time to establish a rhythm, especially when the season is so short. Considering that we started late, we are very satisfied with how things have gone.
All chefs place great emphasis on the raw ingredients they use; how important are they for you?
For me, they’re absolutely essential. We’ve got a system whereby if the suppliers don’t bring us first rate raw ingredients, they can just take them straight back again. I only want the very best. Both fish and vegetables can be difficult to get at this time of year, especially fish. For example, I would prefer to prepare some really fresh, high quality mackerel than use tuna that is not up to scratch.
How do you intend to adjust your gastronomy to Ibiza’s diners?
That’s a good question. In the end, there’s good food and bad food and that’s true of diners, too. I’m adapting to what clients ask for. Diners are looking for something here that they can’t find elsewhere; they want special things. To give you an example of one recent innovation, upstairs on the Terrace we have just introduced a dish of ramen, or Chinese noodles, served with a frozen sauce and it’s proving really popular. The fact that we’re starting to get repeat diners is very encouraging. It’s a year of trying things out; we’ll keep what works and throw out what doesn’t. So far, in the six weeks we’ve been open, we’ve already gone through seven or eight different menus.
Are there any local culinary traditions from the island that you plan to introduce at Heart?
If you remember, at the opening there was a stew based on an Ibizan recipe. As far as local produce is concerned, our only problem is that, since we require large quantities of fresh produce on a daily basis, not many local farmers are capable of handling that kind of demand.
Aren’t you concerned that the “performance” aspect that Cirque du Soleil brings to the enterprise is going to overshadow the cooking?
No: quite the opposite. I believe it will stimulate us to raise our game even higher. As I said, this year it’s a case of trying things out. We’re holding meetings all the time to work out how to fuse performance, music and gastronomy and when we manage to get it all absolutely right—by which I mean next season—that will be Heart.