Buenos Aires in Argentina; Miami, Birmingham and Houston in the United States; and Istanbul in Turkey are, in that order, the chosen cities for this second BBVA-El Celler de Can Roca tour. For 5 weeks, the Roca brothers and 40 members of staff from their restaurant will embark on a journey that will take them from the south to the north of the American continent, moving on to the Atlantic and the Mediterranean until reaching the city that joins Europe with Asia: Istanbul.
The BBVA-El Celler de Can Roca 2015 tour starts on August 1 and will last until the first week in September, although the exploration journeys begin that same week. Josep Roca, sommelier and head of the El Celler de Can Roca kitchen leaves tomorrow, Friday, for Buenos Aires to get a head start on part of the logistics, find inspiration from the native Argentinean ingredients and get to know the local products for the summer tour. In coming weeks, Joan Roca and Jordi Roca will the same in Turkey and the United States, respectively.
Including this second edition, the tour will make a total of 100,000 plates of food served in 6 countries and 120,000 km covered between 2014 and 2015, which is the equivalent of going around the world 3 times. What's more, this year they will take the leap from the Americas to Europe and Asia, thanks to the inclusion of Turkey.
"We want to do more each year, and for this second edition of the tour, together with BBVA, our goal is really ambitious. We are really excited and aware of the huge responsibility of this challenge, which my brothers and I came up with as a sincere tribute to the extraordinary and different kinds of cuisine", said Joan Roca today in San Sebastian, where he shared the first details about the new tour and where he will be receiving the 'Genius' innovation award tonight, during a conference that recognizes innovation in gastronomy.
For the BBVA's Brand & Communication Director, Ignacio Moliner, "this tour is a tribute to the gastronomy of the countries we visit and we are doing it with respect and humbleness. It's a passionate adventure, something that's never been done before and which is made possible thanks to the pure harmony between BBVA and the Roca brothers. Their spirit of excellence, their non-conformity and their ability to innovate are values and attitudes that bring us together on this new tour, which is going global this year, and which will take us to visit several continents".
BBVA scholarship program at El Celler de Can Roca
The gastronomy tour, the result of a global alliance between BBVA and El Celler de Can Roca, keeps its social component intact. The Roca brothers will select two hospitality students from each of the cities they visit with the aim of promoting local talent. These young cooks will enjoy a scholarship at the Roca brothers' restaurant in Girona for 4 months.
Every year, the restaurant receives more than 400 applications from people wanting work experience, which is why these students who form part of the El Celler de Can Roca team can be considered as the best incentive possible.
50,000 plates of food served at the 1st edition of the BBVA-El Celler de Can Roca Tour in 2014
In 2014, the BBVA-El Celler de Can Roca tour turned into the gastronomic event of the year, travelling to Houston, Dallas, Monterrey, Mexico City, Bogota and Lima. The Roca brothers and their team prepared nearly 50,000 dishes for 2,700 diners.
This is the first tour of its kind in history, conceived as a tribute to the gastronomy of each of the countries visited. The tour was also used to produce the documentary film Cooking up a Tribute, which premiered at the Berlin festival, and which is currently being showed at the main film festivals in the world.