Cierra Espai Sucre, the first dessert restaurant in the world

Espai Sucre, the world's first dessert restaurant, will close its doors on July 31.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
03 April 2024 Wednesday 16:32
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Cierra Espai Sucre, the first dessert restaurant in the world

Espai Sucre, the world's first dessert restaurant, will close its doors on July 31. The news was announced by Jordi Butrón himself, creator and director of the space, through a video published on his Instagram account. The current promotion will also be the last of the school that for more than 20 years has spread the revolutionary essence of Butrón cuisine. “My health problems discourage me from managing the day-to-day life of the school,” explained the pastry chef, but he assured that he is “very calm,” since the Espai Sucre method continues to live “in hundreds of students spread throughout the school.” world". A technique that is based on “knowledge of the raw material, flavor and exhaustive analysis of the creative process.”

Despite the closure of the store in the heart of Barcelona, ​​Butrón has announced that he will continue teaching and will continue managing The best dessert, the competition created in 2007 that brings together pastry chefs from different parts of the world to compete for the title of the best dessert. In addition, the chef is working on the publication of a book that compiles the 25 years of the history of Espai Sucre.

Butrón had felt for some time the need to slow down his work pace. Although his health problems are not serious, it was necessary for the chef to reduce his daily stress levels. The decision to step away from managing his business arose from the recommendation of his cardiologist and coincides with the great emotional blow that the loss of his father meant this same year.

In the latest episode of the podcast Stay to eat, on the Comer channel of La Vanguardia, the critic and friend of Butrón, Philippe Regol, highlighted the transcendental contribution of the creator of Espai Sucre in the development and dissemination of haute pastries internationally. “I met Jordi Butron 30 years ago, when restaurant dessert was not well conceptualized,” said Regol. “There was an intrusion of store pastries through the presence of the dessert cart in haute cuisine. Jordi said no, modernity in gastronomy has to extend to the dessert, whether it is the work of the chef himself or a pastry chef. Yours has been a great contribution; He even made a dessert menu. And he thought about the reason for each ingredient.”

Jordi Butrón has received numerous international distinctions throughout his career for his contribution to haute pastry and his role in the dissemination of innovative techniques in pastry. In 2003 he was recognized as Professional of the Year by the Catalan Academy of Gastronomy, due to his “brilliant approach to dessert cooking and the dissemination carried out in his school”, which became a center of international reference.

“At first it was very difficult,” Butrón revealed to La Vanguardia during an interview in 2019. The concept of the restaurant, “with a couple of savory dishes and the rest desserts,” was not understood. “People came in out of curiosity and many nights the waiter would take an order and then he would tell you: 'Hey, they've gotten up and left.'” But Butron was not afraid. “I thought that if it didn't work we would close it and that's it.” Finally, after a year, the impact of the space skyrocketed and it was replicated in other gastronomic capitals such as Paris, New York and Berlin. “I love that and I'm excited to have been the first.”

The Espai Sucre teaching method stood out, in Butrón's words, for the importance with which the presentation of the dishes was approached. “For us, presentation is a way of guiding or manipulating the client so that they eat it the way I want it to be eaten, beyond an aesthetic issue.” At Espai Essence, the current name of the Espai Sucre restaurant, dishes are plated to measure, depending on whether the customer is left- or right-handed.

“Enough of sugar being the main element,” exclaimed Butrón. “We use aromatic herbs, alcohol, spices, vegetables.” Butrón's proposals are infused with an exquisite variety of flavors that are not limited to sweet. “Before the desserts were chocolate, hazelnut, cream. Today the range has changed a lot and there is everything in desserts.” Although web reservations are temporarily closed, those who wish to enjoy the Espai Essence for the last time will be able to do so on Fridays and Saturdays until the end of July.