ORÍGENES GASTRONOMIC FESTIVAL: A MOUTH-WATERING FIVE-STAR TRIP OF ARTISANAL FOOD
Upon arrival at Palauet de Teià, it’s immediately clear that you’re in for a real treat. The place itself is the first indicator, and the passport you’re handed is the other. You quickly realize you’re about to embark on a culinary journey you’re not likely to forget.
The first edition of oríGenes Gastronomic Festival, created last year in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, is a unique event where you are set off on a gastronomic trip around the Iberian peninsula with the help of 12 well-known and respected chefs. It’s a two-day event aimed at establishing awareness of the origins of the products used to create the fresh, authentic dishes on hand as well as the technique involved and the passionate people behind the artisanal process.
The 12 chefs on hand served up eight hours of live, uninterrupted cooking; the chefs this year were: Carlos Piernas, Anselmo Pérez, Viri Fernández, Nacho Gómara, Edu Torres, Daniel Jordà, Albert Roca, José Luis Domínguez, Gorka Rodríguez, Eva Vila, Juan Ángel Rodrigálvarez and Bárbara Sanfilippo. Each elaborated dishes that were paired with 11 ecological wines and used traditional techniques that have been passed down through generations.
As you visit each one of them at their stands, you are given stamps in your festival passport, which, if you’ve ever had the pleasure of doing it, makes you feel as if you’re on the Camino de Santiago all over again. The stamps represent each drink and each dish you eat, with the obvious goal being to fill your passport up; given everything on the festival’s menu, you’re more than happy to oblige. This element of the festival was a nice surprise and a fun memento to hold onto.
Not only were there mouth-watering food and wine, but there were also beers from Cervezas Alhambra (who also offered a food and beer pairing menu) and specialty coffee from Cafés El Magnífico to round things off. There were also some parallel activities offered such as talks, workshops, exhibitions, and concerts.
We had the pleasure to learn how to make pizza dough from Daniel Jordà and his partner Luigi di Domenico, who told anecdotes, shared their knowledge, and sent us home with a kilo of dough to make our own pizzas; this serves to give you an idea of the type of experience you can have at next year’s edition of the festival: an intimate, firsthand interaction with food artisans who love their craft and are eager to share their passion and knowledge with you.
All of this at the private Godò family property that is, without exaggeration, breathtaking. The 17th century masia, also known as Can Godó, and which is included in the Inventory of the Architectural Heritage of Catalonia, peeks out amongst the forest up in the hills in Teià, just a short drive from Barcelona (you can take the train to Ocata and then a 12-15min bus ride, as well). The atmosphere around the 25,000m2 grounds is peaceful, almost Zen-like, as all you hear are the sound of birds, that is, until the live music kicks in (which only enhances the magic of the site). What’s more, the staff were very friendly and helpful.
To sum up, this is a festival that should become a staple gastronomic event for years to come.
If you love gastronomy and enjoy unique experiences in the middle of nature, this festival is well worth the price tag; 195€ probably sounds steep, but you are assured a culinary experience you will not forget or regret.
Food. Drink. Art. Culture. History. Nature.
That’s what’s on menu at oríGenes.
By EMILY BENSON
Photos by ISABEL TROYA and EMILY BENSON