Moments to enjoy
WITH THREE MICHELIN STARS TO ITS NAME, MOMENTS LIVES UP TO ITS ACCOLADES
IF YOU HAD TO choose one of the best restaurants to visit in Barcelona, Moments would be near the top of the list. The signature restaurant of the city’s Mandarin Oriental, Moments is run by acclaimed chef Carme Ruscalleda, and has garnered three Michelin stars since it opened in 2005. Indeed, acquiring Michelin stars is something that Ruscalleda knows about; she’s the only woman in the world to be awarded seven stars.
Anyway, Moments offers neo-traditional Catalan cuisine based on top-quality ingredients, presented in an innovative way. Products from the Maresme area form the basis of the menu and they shine for themselves, never mind the precise presentation and attention to detail in the dishes. In a nutshell, it’s star cuisine worthy of the accolades.
Located on the hotel’s mezzanine level and designed by Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola, Moments seats 45 for lunch and dinner. Private dining at the chef’s table, for up to 10 guests, behind a sheer curtain, presents an intimate view over the kitchen. To complement the a la carte service, Moments offers a tasting menu option, and the Club Migdia menu, a faster option from Tuesday to Friday lunchtime.
The tasting menu, known as ‘The Trip’, is the one to go for. Inspired by the Mandarin Oriental Group, the idea is to take guests on a culinary tour of the world, stopping at cities in which the group has hotels. All in all, there are 14 courses, along with a ‘souvenir’ course to take away, featuring beautifully finished cookies and biscuits baked in the shapes of famous global monuments. Wine is paired beautifully with each dish.
The journey begins, naturally, in Barcelona, with an innovative dish that sees strawberries and anchovies draped delicately across Spanish bread. Strong and fishy, it’s certainly a daring start to the meal, but the anchovies play exceedingly well against the tartness of the strawberries. Next stop is Hong Kong, which reveals an expertly crafted pork dimsum with spicy sauce, and after that is Paris, where guests are treated to a foie gras, green celery, apple and Armagnac macaroon.
The menu twists and turns from Tokyo and Madrid, through Milan and New York, to Bangkok and Shanghai, before stopping off in London for some cheese, and ending in Marrakech for a sweet and spicy dessert. The dishes are too numerous and varied to mention, but the common thread is that each small bite is a playful take on what a standout example of a certain country’s cuisine can be. There are mini burgers, pita breads, cocktails and more, each more innovative than the last. Some require several waiting staff to surround a table of two simply to prepare. The sense of occasion is simply breathtaking.