Linen tablecloth, dinky clink of glasses on the table, wines decanted with the ceremony that the moment demands. In the background, conversations and some laughter allow us to enjoy the moment in a quiet and cozy setting.
Far away in the past are those frugal dinners of the subsistence economy of a country that knew how to make a virtue out of a necessity, and now it has managed to turn the pig slaughter products and mountain vegetables into an art.
The bordas, traditional buildings made with stone and wood, have gone from drying tobacco or keeping the herd during the cold winter nights, to become exclusive refuges for gourmets and “connaisseurs” from all over the world. These small jewels of traditional Andorran architecture can be found in the property portfolio of Andorra Sotheby’s International Realty, so that lovers of these small mountain corners can have their own and exclusive space.
Some of the ingredients that Andorran nature is offering have a major presence on the tables of the most prestigious chefs in the country: The “trumfa” or potato and the green cabbage are two of the zero kilometer products that can be found in restaurants like Can Manel, in Andorra la Vella. From his kitchen, chef Carles Flinch, unites tradition and service vocation, passion for the well-done work, slow cooking and love for its ingredients .
From its famous “Cargols a la llauna” one of the “must” of the house, to pig trotters with prawns or any of the grilled meats that gave the place its reputation. The difficult thing is to choose, although it is always a safe bet, especially for traditional cuisine lovers.
It is easy to be tempted to perceive the Andorran cuisine as a stronghold of the traditional Pyrenean cuisine. Because yes, it is, but it is also much more than this.
For more than 40 years, Marquet Gourmeterie has delighted those who value Spéciales Gillardeau oysters accompanied by a Krug Rosé, served just at the right temperature. In this emblematic place of Les Escaldes, we can find the infallible poker of those who value a product of the highest quality treated with care and respect: Joselito Ham, Carpier Smoked Salmon, Marquet’s Foie-gras mi-cuit, Artisan Cheeses Xavier- one of the most prestigious from France- and chocolate Valhrona. All accompanied by a well-stocked cellar, with small jewels such as the Château Lafite-Rothschild 1882 and the recommendations of the Marquet brothers, heirs of the tradition and know-how of their father – and pioneer of the house – Jordi Marquet.
The founder of Marquet Gourmeterie, Jordi Marquet, is a firm believer that the best businesses are closed around the table, and around his tables great alliances and also great love stories were born.
More and more chefs are making a name by themselves around the world. Some of these great international figures are also present in Andorra. This is the case of Nandu Jubany, who, from the Origin restaurant of the Hermitage Sport Hotels Soldeu complex, offers us the same tasting menu that -with a Michelin star- is offered at the Can Jubany restaurant in Vic.
A symphony of nine dishes and appetizers, paired with a wide variety of wines that are carefully selected by the sommelier, in an exclusive and delicious tasting menu.
Among the main dishes of the Origen restaurant we could find the “Coca de foie gras with caramelized apple” and the “Dry rice with Espardenyes”.
To sum up, a short walk through some of the restaurants and emblematic gastronomic spaces of a small country that has managed to combine its ancestral history, with the sophistication of a big capital.