Elena Arzak: Flavours of the Basque region

Elena Arzak is a world-renowned chef, widely acknowledged to be one of the most pioneering female chefs in history. Here she talks about her love of flavour.

“As a chef you are always proud of the last dish you create, because it means that you are not boring and that you are still alive,” says Spanish chef Elena Arzak, arguably the best female chef in the world.

From a young age Arzak was interested in gastronomy and grew up in and out of the kitchen of her father’s restaurant, Arzak, where she is now the head chef. The signature dishes they serve are always evolving, and feature a cutting edge reinterpretation of traditional Basque cuisine. 

“Spain is a mosaic of different cultures and each different region has it’s own cuisine,” explains Arzak. Catalan cuisine, for example, is very different to Basque food and the food of each region is strongly tied to the identity and history. 

Arzak’s passion for her work is easy to see in the way she talks about its effect on her life. 

“You look to the world with the eyes of a chef, everything can be related to the food.”

Watch the Talk with Elena Arzak