Elephant Crocodile Monkey - Explosions of Colours and Flavour
Recently I was invited to try out a tasting menu at Elephant Crocodile Monkey, a restaurant located in the beautiful Casa Bonay Hotel. I've been hanging out in Libertine, their cocktail bar slash working space because I love the vibe the place has (plus good background music for working!). Now finally I had the opportunity to eat there too.
It has been a while since I have been so blown away by a gastronomic experience. We were presented with one dish after another, and I could not stop ooooing and aaaawing. The flavours, the colours, the combinations, the aromas, the ceramics... Everything joined together in a beautiful experience that still makes my mouth water.
The tasting menu includes dishes from Vietnam, China, Japan, Thailand and India. I honestly thought every single dish we tasted was fabulous, but my absolute favourites were the Shuiyiao (dumplings served with chilli oil), the Tod Man Pla (fish croquettes with sweet potato) and the Tom Yum soup. The last one blew my mind. The broth itself was amazingly flavourful and rich, and the razor clams, Asian mushrooms and the fresh shrimp added to the perfection. If you're not an expert on Asian gastronomy do not worry: neither am I. But you really don't have to be in order to appreciate these dishes.
When you have this kind of a gastronomic experience you know that perfection like this is not a coincidence. I decided to do some research on who is behind the this work of art. His name is Estanislao Carenzo, and he is a fascinating personality with plenty of experience and interesting ideas (read more about him in this interview for Roam). Only the complexity of a creative mind can create a food experience like this, and you need to go and try it for ourself immediately. Just trust me on this one.
IN A NUTSHELL
Atmosphere: All of Casa Bonay is hip and elegant without being all about the appearance though. It has a New York kind of vibe to it. The restaurant is not big but has a lot of atmosphere.
Recommendations: The Tom Yum soup is a MUST. Your mouth will water between the slurps..!
Specifics: I'd dare to call this affordable fine dining, there is so much elegance, creativity and complexity to the dishes. Take your time and enjoy it.
Address: Gran Vía de les Corts Catalanes 700