Top Spanish chef Santamaria dies in Singapore

16th February 2011, Comments 1 comment

Spain's Michelin-starred chef Santi Santamaria died Wednesday while on a visit to Singapore, one of his restaurants said. He was 53.

A manager at his Can Fabes bistro at Sant Celoni near Barcelona said Santamaria died suddenly while in his restaurant in Singapore.

He said he was not aware of the cause of death.

Santamaria was a self-taught chef who was proud of his use of locally-sourced produce.

He was also a severe critic of rival Spanish chef Ferran Adria, accusing him causing harmful health effects with his "molecular gastronomy."

"Can we be proud of a cuisine ... created by Ferran Adria and his chorus of fans, which fills plates with gelling agents and laboratory emulsifiers?," he once said.

But although he was "conceptually and ethically divorced" from Adria he stressed he had "enormous respect" for his rival, whose restaurant elBulli is considered one of the world's best.

© 2011 AFP

1 Comment To This Article

  • Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet posted:

    on 22nd February 2011, 14:19:43 - Reply

    Chef Santi dies in his kitchen

    By Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet

    Michelin Star chefs, especially 3 Michelin star chefs are hard to find. My friend, Chef Santi Santamaria of Barcelona was the Guru of Catalonian cuisine. He could make culinary magic with just the best ingredients and salt and pepper. He taught me personally how to make one of his Murcian inspired specialities, namely, a whole fish baked in a salt crust.
    On 16 Feb, 2011, in the kitchen of his restaurant "Santi" in the Marina Bay Sands casino in Singapore, at about 8pm, he collapsed due to a heart attack. Suprisingly, NOT ONE person used CPR or an AED to save him. They simply called for the ambulance and waited. The ambulance came to late.
    Sadly, Santi died.
    I reallly cannot understand why no one and not one Marina Bay Sands staff used CPR (cardioi pulmonary resuscitation)or an AED (automated emergency defibrillator). He might be alive today.
    And another thing is why there is no mention of his sudden passing in Chowhound???
    Does no food lover care that Santi has gone to the big kitchen in the sky?? Well, at least he died in his favourite place…the kitchen. he will be missed by his friends.

    On another gastronomic matter, Heston Blumenthal has opened his restaurant in London to great fanfare but not many realise that the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in London has treated the former Chef Chris Staines of Foliage in the same hotel very badly and shabbily. They evicted him although his restaurant which had 1 Michelin star was very successful, and Chris is a great chef. He was evicted for no fault of his own but just to make way for Heston Blumenthal who I think should be satisfied with his Fat Duck and not want to open another molecular gastronomy place. For the uninitiated, the amount of chemicals in a dish cooked by molecular gastronomy is so huge you would not eat one spoon if you knew about the lecithin, calcium digluconate, sodium alginate, pectin, liquid Nitrogen and other things...Incidentally, Dental Surgeons use sodium alginate to take impressions of your teeth. Bite on that, Ha! Ha!

    It is a cold, cruel, heartless world not only in the caves of Afghanistan but also in the culinary world...
    So ist das Leben...