The Tree of Life, made from cassava, cheese, and basil, at ElcieloColombian restaurant.
As Art Basel Miami Beach returns for its 21st edition, the spotlight once again falls on El Cielo. The restaurant is one of the most sought after reservations year round but during Art Basel is when the restaurant becomes a hotspot for the world’s most famous art lovers and enthusiasts.
Each year, the Art Basel event draws tens of thousands of people throughout the course of its VIP and regular days. Art Basel isn’t just about art displays in galleries—it’s a cultural sensation that goes beyond art itself. It creates a space where creativity, new ideas, and sophistication come together in more ways than just what meets the eye. Within this engaging art backdrop, restaurants like El Cielo have established themselves as an integral part of the Art Basel experience.
Embracing Culinary Innovation:
El Cielo (or that choco-therapy restaurant, if you know it from social media), has been causing quite a stir in Miami lately. Within the city, the restaurant operates in two areas: Brickell and the latest addition at SLS South Beach.
Other than the innovative chocotherapy, as the final touch when serving coffee, a cloud magically appears above the guest’s table, inspired by Elcielo’s Spanish name, signifying both Sky and Heaven.
While there have been concerns about the cost and some critical viewpoints, many patrons find the restaurant’s unique approach to gastronomy an extraordinary journey worth exploring. The restaurant somehow exceptionally manages to blend art, science, and gastronomy, which are three separate arenas.
El Cielo is not only a restaurant but also a gallery of food, gastronomic artistry, and taste sensations. Chef Juanma’s food itself is art in many ways. So, during Art Basel, a table at El Cielo can indeed be worthwhile. Of course, the soaring demand for it proves this even more.
While some may raise concerns over El Cielo’s pricing, you can rest assured that when it comes to an unmatched culinary experience, El Cielo will surpass your expectations.
Who exactly is Chef Juanma, the visionary behind El Cielo?
Juan Manuel Barrientos Valencia (Juanma) is a chef, entrepreneur, and peace leader who has been recognized as one of the most influential Colombians in the world. He started his career at the age of 23, when he opened his first restaurant, El Cielo, in Medellín, Colombia. Since then, he has expanded his brand to Bogotá, Miami, and Washington D.C., earning accolades such as Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants, The World’s Best Chef, and the coveted Michelin star.
Juanma’s cuisine is inspired by his Colombian roots, his travels around the world, and his passion for social causes. His food offers diverse artistic techniques that create rich sensory experiences, engaging both the mind and the senses.
He is also the founder of the El Cielo Foundation, which aims to promote peace and reconciliation through cooking workshops for former combatants, victims, and vulnerable populations in Colombia.
Art Basel and El Cielo: A Perfect Pairing:
As the continued demand for a table at El Cielo grows, Art Basel is the prime time to try and secure a seat. Chef Juanma’s creations are the perfect pair to the galleries and curatorial focuses that adorn the city. El Cielo is more than just a restaurant, it is a gallery of tastes and gastronomic artistry.
More about Art Basel Miami Beach 2023: Art Basel Miami Beach is part of the global Art Basel fairs, with events also in Hong Kong, Paris, and Basel, Switzerland. The main venue is the Miami Beach Convention Center, divided into six sections: galleries, positions, survey, nova, meridians, and kabinett, each with a specific curatorial focus.
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