TOP chef Angel Leon is walking on air as his Cadiz restaurant earns its long-awaited second Michelin star.
His celebrated El Puerto Santa Maria fish factory Aponiente was the only restaurant in Spain to earn the coveted award in this year’s Michelin restaurant guide for Spain and Portugal.
Andalucia’s wild boy of the kitchen, and known around Spain as ‘the chef of the sea’, Angel has single-handedly revolutionised the way to eat fish.
Leading the drive to sustainable eating, the chef has deliberately eschewed popular – and largely endangered – fish to seek out unfashionable, little-known breeds instead.
But bitter disappointment reigned for many at the Marbella ceremony, with no new three-star restaurants and very little movement at the top.
For the next year at least, Spain is still home to just eight three-star restaurants.
But the lack of progress at the top of the heap was balanced out the by launch of 19 restaurants – five of which are in Madrid – onto the Michelin scene, each taking their first star.
The international director for the Michelin guide’s Michael Ellis said: “There has been a stagnation, that’s certain, but we can’t create the stars ourselves.
“On the other hand, in the future I see a new generation. I see a generation full of dynamism and creativity.”