BBVA brand ambassador and world-renowned chef Joan Roca’s culinary creativity took Houston by storm last week - like a well-oiled football team takes over its opponent.
In town for the big game, Roca traveled to Texas to provide BBVA Compass clients big flavors at a local restaurant during a private lunch and dinner this week. Roca, who makes up one third of the famous Roca brothers of El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain, cooked up multiple dishes made with ingredients from the region.
“Houston had a big spotlight on it last week, and what we wanted to do with that spotlight was use it to give back to our clients,” said BBVA Compass Texas Regional Executive Jeff Dudderar. “Our clients are the passionate community and business leaders who make Houston a great place with a bright future. Joan and his brothers are just as passionate about their food, a common language for people worldwide.”
Houston had a big spotlight on it last week, and what we wanted to do with that spotlight was use it to give back to our clients
The head chef of El Celler de Can Roca, twice named the no. 1 restaurant in the world in the past four years by Restaurant magazine, prepared five appetizers, six main courses and two desserts for those in attendance. Both events were hosted by BCN Taste & Tradition, a highly-rated, Spanish fine dining restaurant located in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood.
“BCN has been gracious beyond words,” said Dudderar at the dinner, “They’re Spaniards, so when we told them what we wanted to do, they didn’t bat an eyelash. Like us, they’re so proud of the Rocas.”
BCN has been gracious beyond words.
On the menu
Menu items included suckling pig and green papaya salad, oyster with fennel sauce and black garlic, vegetable consommé with marinated scallops and an appetizer with small bites inspired from different ethnic cuisines. This “Dig Into the World” dish included inspirations from Thailand, Japan, China, Korea and Peru.
“When we travel around the world, we come with an open heart and an open mind,” said Roca in a live interview with KHOU’s Great Day Houston, broadcasted at the NFL Experience on Jan. 31. “We’re always eager to learn, and sometimes what we learn is translated into our menu.”
BBVA-El Celler de Can Roca Tour
Once a year for the past three years, the Roca brothers and their restaurant staff have packed their suitcases and embarked on tours around the globe, sponsored by BBVA. In 2016, El Celler de Can Roca visited London, Hong Kong, Phoenix, San Francisco and Santiago de Chile.
In each city, BBVA customers and guests were invited to enjoy a menu that paid homage to each country's culture and cuisine.