It’s always a tricky thing when television chefs try to translate their winning ratings formula into a bricks and mortar establishment. But when the chefs in question were trained by the likes of Alain Ducasse and Santi Santamaria, it’s probably a good idea to reserve judgment for the time being.
The Torres twins, Javier and Sergio, are hoping to replicate the success of their one Michelin-starred Dos Cielos restaurant at the Meliá Barcelona Sky hotel with a sophomore outlet, this time in Madrid’s Gran Meliá Palacio de Los Duques.
The palace’s former stables have been converted into a long mod-rustic dining room, where the exposed brick walls, original equine fixtures and glass paneled floors are quietly set off by thin-stemmed modular furniture and burnt colours. Arched windows open out into the jardin ancient, a particularly lovely spot in which to sample the Dos Cielos’ 166-wine cellar during the Spanish summers.
In the kitchen, the Torres hermanos have entrusted the brigade to Damián González as well as their diktat to populate the menu with local produce. Some the dishes will be familiar to long time fans with reliable pickings including chicken wings roasted with fenugreek, the ever reliable suckling pig, cod tripe braised with chickpeas, and slabs of top sirloin that have been marinated for three months in a vinaigrette of meat jus and pickles.