Fire! It is our ever-lasting love affair. At Etxebarri it is more than that. If cooking can be an art then what the former electrician Victor Arguinzoniz does with local oak, plus top ingredients must be.
In 2008, a humble Basque restaurant that few had heard of, with a name few could pronounce and a chef who is not even a trained cook, ended up on Restaurant Magazine’s list of the 50 best restaurants in the world.
Asador Etxebarri (ET-che-bah-ree), in the quiet village of Axpe, a 45-minute drive from Bilbao, Spain, has little in the way of white linen or other trappings of fine dining. What it has that most other restaurants don’t, though, is a well-stocked woodshed and a kitchen with seven grills, which have secured its continued presence on the 50-best list, a Michelin star and a reputation as the mecca of grilling.
Photo: Mette Randem