Diverxo: Food Doesn’t Get Much Better Than This

Today I have eaten at Diverxo in Madrid. It’s a bit of an odd place and I’ll tell you why in a few minutes. But first the food: You’re now in my shoes in one of Spain’s top restaurants: Diverxo…

When we sat down in the spacious but small dining room the first thing we noticed was the pig on the table. A pig with feathery wings, in fact!

This restaurant believes that its gastronomy is so out there that if they can make such astounding creations, then maybe pigs can also fly. That’s the explanation the waiter gave anyway. I like confidence.

Diverxo 2013

I was pleased to know that the pig wasn’t staying for the whole meal!

Getting Started

The pig disappeared and the cava was poured into the glasses and the appetiser appeared on the table immediately. The appetiser was spiced peas in the pod that you dip into a gorgeous fresh tomato and chilli sauce and then pull the peas out of the pod with your teeth, leaving the pod in the white container.

Diverxo 2013

Next came the eel soup with baby eels on top. The presentation was amazing: the plate was enormous and the food tiny in comparison and perfectly presented. This was the theme for all the dishes.

Halfway through a dish things were often added to compliment the original elements. In this case it was a perfect foie gras “sandwich” with foie in the middle sandwiched between two pieces of pork crackling, with baby eels on top.

Diverxo 2013

Diverxo 2013

During the meal there was no bread served or offered and very few of what we might consider “extras”. The only appetiser was the peas and from there the menu got into full swing. At the end of the meal there were no petits fours either.

Not at Diverxo

I would love to tell you exactly what we ate but as Diverxo is a bit odd, they would not give us a copy of the menu to take with us. In a high end gastronomic restaurant this is very unusual. Normally when you are having upwards of eight dishes all created with so many ingredients and preparation processes the restaurant understands that you cannot remember what you have eaten and you are normally presented with a personalised menu at the end of the meal for you to take home.

Not at Diverxo.

As it happens we had more than 10 dishes and they were designed to take us all around the world. We had a special fusion-style niguiri (sushi) with a fried quails egg on the top. We had Vietnamese sweet and sour pork with an excellent salad which took me right back to Vietnam. We had black rice risotto, we had dim sum and we had truffles with veal cheek.

Things didn’t always come in what we have been made to believe is a logical order: the fish was served after the meat and the desserts were more like salads.

Presentation

The presentation was immaculate and each dish surprising, and several times the chef actually came out of the kitchen to put the finishing touches to the plate and to explain exactly what was going on in the dish.

The most unusual dish was towards the end of the menu when, after having a very large and succulent piece of veal, we were served black cod in wild boar sauce. It had the texture of fish and the flavour of game. And it was very cleverly done.

During the meal I took a few iphone photos but not many. I have prepared you a selection just here…

Diverxo

 

Diverxo 2013

Diverxo 2013

Diverxo 2013

Diverxo 2013

Diverxo 2013

Diverxo 2013

Why is Diverxo a bit odd?

Okay, so why is Diverxo a bit odd?

Well, first of all it is a tiny place with only eight tables and had only 17 diners when we were there, including ourselves.

There was an empty table, which surprised me because it’s hard to book a table at Diverxo. I think that because they are so inflexible with their booking procedure they lose out: you can book a table at Diverxo one month in advance, but no more. So if it’s January and you want to go in March you can’t book. You have to wait until February and then try to book. This is pretty inconvenient for many people, including ourselves, as we have to travel from Mallorca to go there. And we can’t book a flight until we have a table and we can’t book a table until one month before… Anyway…

Another way they shoot themselves in the foot is by being so inflexible with the menu. As you may know from other posts here, I don’t eat seafood. The first time we went to Diverxo they would not change the seafood dishes in the long tasting menu and we were told that we had to have the short tasting menu instead. Obviously the short menu costs less so they earned less that day and we did not get what we wanted – nobody won.

Actually, I should say that this time at Diverxo they did make considerably more effort to accommodate my requirement.

But at the end of the dinner it’s the client who is paying and it’s the client who will recommend you. It’s all well and good having a philosophy where you serve certain things for a certain reason and where you really believe in your menu, but unfortunately Diverxo’s stubborn attitude makes them look like they are saying “this is what we have, if you don’t like it don’t come.” Are they saying that?

As the client, when I have booked a table a month in advance and have advised them that I don’t eat seafood a month in advance I expect the appropriate changes to be made, not to turn up on the day of the meal to be told no.

And my final reason why Diverxo is odd is the awful uniforms that they have their waiting staff wear. What are they thinking with black half-mast trousers, a floaty skirt thing over the top, enormous black clown boots and a black t-shirt that looks so worn and washed that it is completely out of shape?

Unfortunately I can’t find a decent photo of the ridiculous costume they wear and I didn’t take one so you’ll just have to take my word for it: David Muñoz needs to get his staff something decent to wear!

Anyway you’re probably feeling hungry now after all this food… you can satisfy your appetite here with more Fine Dining. Or see more photos from this meal on Flickr:

If you can’t see this slideshow please click here.

I would like to remind you that all the photos used on InMyShoesTravel.com are my own unless otherwise stated.
You can see my whole collection of Travel Photos here.

Filed Under: featuredFine Diningfood and drinkmadridMadrid GastronomyspainWhere I Am Right Now

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About the Author: Based in Mallorca, obsessed with the world and have a lot to say about both... Step into my shoes and join me on a journey...

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