Spain, United States and Middle East These are the regions of the world where Dani García has twenty restaurants located. The Marbella chef plans to reach that number of establishments by the end of 2022, something that confirms him as one of the most successful chefs at an international level. In addition, this year he will add three new locations to his international offer: Alelí, Tragabuches and Kemuri. All in all, it is estimated that the turnover of García’s culinary businesses will reach 45 million euros, a positive effect on the expansion of Spanish cuisine.
In L’Atelierthe space where in December 2018 he informed his team that he was closing his three-star restaurant in Marbella and abandoning the elite of haute cuisine to reach a wider audience, explains to a small group of journalists the company’s expansion plans, formed with its partners Javier and Laura Gutierrez and that already has about 1,600 workers. since it changed to Ferran Adria as “lighthouse” by Joël Robuchon and Nobuyuki Matsuhisa, with restaurants all over the world, has not stopped creating concepts. He works the same hours as before, he admits, but also that: “Restaurants make so much money that I’m not going to spend it in my life.”
One of its objectives is “to put Spain in the international point of view”, so that it is recognized not only for haute cuisine or, in contrast, a bad paella. “Our passion is for our cuisine to be known in general,” she says. That is why he has introduced bluefin tuna-“a product that is not associated with Spain outside”-in Dani House (New York) and in Lobito de Mar and BiBo in Dohaand will be a protagonist of his letters in the rest of the international projects he plans.
This year will be intense and key for the group. just inaugurated Babettehis version of French classicism in marbellawhere it also announces the opening in July gabbler, the first restaurant in which he worked. But not in its evolved phase, the one in which it dazzled the diner with liquid nitrogen and with which it achieved its first Michelin star, but in its original phase, that of 1998, when it wanted to turn it into “the best traditional Andalusian restaurant”.
Cured meats, croquettes, Ronda stew, oxtail ravioli, Malaga goat, mashed potatoes with olive oil and livers with onions, ajoblanco with shrimp ravioli… “We want to refresh, an idea that is in all our concepts, the kitchen traditional Andalusian”, he details. It will be a family restaurant, with capacity for 117 diners inside and 78 on the terracewhich will also take him to Madrid in November, where he already has BiBo, Lobito de Mar, Firewood and Smoked Roomthe first Spanish restaurant in decades to achieve two Michelin stars at once and the only one that has not been tested in its city, Marbella.
“From Marbella, to the world”
Because it is its center of operations, “from Marbella to the world”, it will also open in June in this important tourist destination on the Costa del Sol, in the Puente Romano complex, two other new concepts, Alelí and Kemuri. The first is a “fresh and ‘vivace'” Italian, for which he has hired a chef from that country who will prepare fresh pasta and pizzas; Kemuri a Japanese ‘izakaya’ (tavern) to which he will add sushi because raw cooking is what he is most passionate about today.
Another novelty for 2022 is Le Chambre Bleu, a name that pays homage to another man from Malaga, Picasso, through the name of the first painting he painted in Paris. It will open this fall, in Paris and Amsterdam, and it will be “one hundred percent Spanish” with an important part of the menu dedicated to bluefin tuna. He will also take Leña -his version of a meat grill- to Miami (United States), a “strategic destination” for the Dani García Group, and Dubai. Altogether, the investment in openings this year exceeds €13 million.
While looking for a location for BiBo Marbella -his totally transformed premises are now occupied by Babette- and Leña in London, he witnesses the growth of the food delivery service The Great Mediterranean Familypresent for now in twenty Spanish cities, and planning his landing in Budapest, hints that he does not rule out “buying a Spanish catering company” and dreams of tackling the world of hamburgers.
At 46 years old, his job has become “dreaming” new restaurant models and designing their menus, and for the time being has created 13 brandsbecause “the larger the catalog, the more opportunities we have to arrive with the right one for each place in the world, there is so much gap to cover!”.