Author: Rodrigo García Fernández /©ICEX
Translation: Jenny McDonald /©ICEX
This German chef, the son of Spanish emigrants, is a good example of globalization in gastronomy. He offers Spanish-inspired, avant-garde cuisine but in Germany. Born and brought up in southern Germany, Amador decided when he finished school that he wanted to become a hotel manager.
But all he could find at the Gasthof Lamm restaurant in Weinstadt (Baden-Württenberg) was a cooking apprenticeship, so he took it. Three years there led on to several top-flight restaurants and hotels in Munich, Baden-Baden and Ravensburg.
As head chef at the Petersilie restaurant in Lüdenscheidf, he received his first Michelin star. In the late 1990s, he took charge of the Schlosshof restaurant in Aschaffenburg, where he was awarded a first star in 2000 and the second in 2002.
On 27 February 2005, Amador opened his own establishment in Lagen bei Frankfurt, with his wife Victoria Wörz as maître. In just two years it came to be included in the list of the 35 best restaurants in Germany and, according to some reviewers, the best in the state of Hesse. The main attraction in this restaurant is that the menu pays tribute to the latest developments in Spanish cuisine. It also has one of the most extensive Spanish wine lists in Europe, where customers can find real rarities. Also available are Spanish olive oil and eau-de-vie lists.
Before the Amador Restaurant turned three, the team heard they had won their third Michelin star, confirming this chef's dazzling career. He always acknowledges that his main source of inspiration is Spain and its gastronomy, and especially the culinary avant-garde. The chefs he admires above all are Adrià , Berasategui and Arzak.
But Juan Amador's CV reaches even greater heights. His restaurant forms part of the prestigious Relais & Chateau club, and in 2006 he was appointed to the Star Chef program to draw up the first-class menus for Lufthansa. And he even found time to open up an elegant, Spanish tapas restaurant in Wiesbaden, called Tasca, inaugurated in October 2006. He also has a research laboratory and a gastronomy consultancy through which he organizes meetings with colleagues from Germany and the rest of Europe so that they can share opinions. In 2008, he was named Germany’s most avant-garde chef as a result of a survey amongst cooks all over the country.
That same year, Amador set up two new business projects – Amador Suite, a luxury hotel with a single bedroom located above his gastronomic laboratory. Amongst the many details available in this unusual suite is the possibility of sampling the delicious 100% acorn-fed Iberico ham by Joselito, sliced and ready to eat. Amador’s second project in 2008 is his wine online shop Amadoro, on which browsers can choose from a selection of great Spanish wines, receiving advice from Juan Amador himself.