Tag Archives: Olot

Les Cols – Olot, Spain

LesCols_Hisao_00 above photo © Hisao Suzuki – Les Cols

Les Cols

(34) 69 – 981 3817
Avinguda de les Cols, 2
17800 Olot, Girona, Spain

www.lescols.com

Open Hours:
13:00 – 15:30    Lunch  – Tuesday to Sunday
20:30 – 22:30    Diner  – Tuesday to Saturday

In the remote town of Olot  in la Garrotxa, a volcanic area in the north of Catalonia; chef Fina Puigdevall – with the help of RCR Architects –  put forth  Les Cols;  a stunning two star Michelin restaurant; voted most beautiful in the world by a handful of publications.

Puigdevall’s culinary proposals are rooted in the surrounding landscape.  The majority of the ingredients are grown and raised at the restaurant, maintaining an ultra local and organic practices.  It is beyond “farm to table” as the table is at this beautiful 13th century farm.

Our three hour long meal started with a glass of cava and mini hot cheese buckwheat crust sandwiches in the garden, them we where guided to our table

Dishes were paraded through the golden room to vanish soon after!

Buckwheat spaghetti in a smoked broth turned out to be a gelatinous signature dish.
Early spring brought us calçots in a charcoal tempura with beetroot romesco (Catalan nut and red pepper based sauce).  This is a Catalan delicacy – and truthfully we coud have repeated this for a few more plates!

The lovely Pumpkin 5 different ways, was educational and delicious!  It turns out the five was are: grated, cold xantana, crouton, soup, & a sliced with black olive oil !

Overall service was good, attentive, and knowledgeable … not to mention patient!  We asked all the questions and  they indulged our curiosity, even letting us explore the entire place, including the kitchen.

Keep in mind this is a really large meal, so don’t eat a big lunch!  Afterwords, we couldn’t move much and sort of rolled back to our hotel!  (Also beware the herbal liquor if you are not used to it .. it is where curiosity crosses to indigestion!)

Les-Cols_010truffles in chanterelle mushroom royal sauce
Les-Cols_012grilled lettuce with lemon- apple vinegar
Les-Cols_005artichoke with tangerine mayonnaise and artichoke chips
Les-Cols_011grilled Brussels sprouts with olive oil and potato puree
Les-Cols_008sweet onion crumble from Croscat, with cheese from Farró and fried herbs
  Les-Cols_018vanilla, thyme, rosemary and orange ice cream
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LesCols_Hisao_01above photo © Hisao Suzuki – Les Cols
LesCols_Hisao_03above photo © Hisao Suzuki – Les Cols
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Les-Cols_040Les Cols event space
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Les Cols Pavellons – Olot, Spain

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Les Cols Pavellons

(34) 69 – 981 3817
Avinguda de les Cols, 2
17800 Olot, Girona, Spain

www.lescolspavellons.com

About an hour and a half north of Barcelona is the Garrotxa, an area full of small volcanoes, nature reserves, and picturesque little towns.  One of these is Olot, and nestled towards the back of a 13th century farm house is the anachronistic Le Cols Pavellons hotel.

This science-fiction like hotel was designed by RCR Architects;  Who are also responsible for the superb restaurant next door, the two Michelin star “Les Cols

In the Pavellons, all rooms are built out of glass; floating over petrified lava.  The ceiling is metal and glass, and the rooms are separated from each other by front and back zen gardens.  Each is isolated in vision and sound – and it is hard  imagine where you are in the world whilst inside your private world.

Miquel-Guifreabove photo ©  Miquel Guifré

As noted, the rooms, or pavellons, are very private being made out of several layers of opaque / translucent green glasses. Blackout shades, the same color tone as the glass, are remote-controlled via a minimalist panel that also controls ambient lighting.

The bathroom has a a floor level plunge tub that fills with soothing volcanic thermal spring water.  The amenities are likewise enjoyable – including the lovely, and very warm, slippers.

Breakfast is planed a day ahead and is left outside your door.  A tray of bread, orange juice,  yogurt, fruits, hard boiled eggs, honey and preserves, butter and tomatoes along with thermoses filled with hot coffee and cold milk.  This is such a lovely way to start the day; my words are just failing to describe the happiness this breakfast brings.

At checkout time, we were given a picnic bag with bread, olive oil, sausage, a round of cheese, salad, mineral water and a lovely bottle of wine.  A loving touch was a collection of postcards depicting watercolors of local attractions – and on the backs were hand drawn road maps of how to get to each one.  We took up the conceit and enjoyed a lovely day of site seeing and picnics!

The Pavellons at Les Cols is not the hotel for everyone;  we recommend reading other reviews before booking.   For us it was a dream location, painful to leave and first in our hearts to return!

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Les_colsabove photo © Les Cols Pavellons

La Garroxta – Girona, Spain

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La Garroxta

Girona, Spain

www.ca.turismegarrotxa.com

La Garroxta is an absurdly lush and lovley county in the province of Girona – just north of Barcelona-  by northern Cataluña.   While it is very small, there are many places to explore and all within close distance to each other!

We explored some of the volcanic region around the town of Olot, where we stayed at “Les Cols Pavilions”

There are about 40 volcanoes in the region, with Croscat and Santa Magarida being the more impressive ones.

gabriel-monsaabove photo Castellfollit de la Roca © Gabriel Monsa
RichardAlonsoabove photo Castellfollit de la Roca © Richard Alonso

Castellfollit de la Roca: This beautiful thin town, dating from the 13th century, is situated on the edge of a fifty meter basalt cliff, almost a kilometer long. The cliff  is the  result of the erosive action of the rivers Fluvià and Toronell.

Laureaabove photo Volcà de Santa Margarida © Laureà

AlainMullerabove photo Besalú © Alain Muller

Besalú:  another lovely town with a 12th-century Romanesque bridge that goes over the Fluvià river. The town is also famous for the restored “Miqvé” Jewish Purification Baths.

fageda-den-Jorda_003Fageda d’en Jordà

Fageda d’en Jordà, a cute birch forrest

51ecb531e8e44e67170000b5_parque-de-piedra-tosca-rcr-arquitectes_i18-986-02-1000x792above photo Parc de Pedra Tosca © Hisao Suzuki –  RCR Architects
Portadaabove photo Parc de Pedra Tosca  © Hisao Suzuki –  RCR Architects

Parc de Pedra Tosca:  This rough rock park  was a monumental project.  Constructed  by  RCR Architects, it involves volcanic rock mounts constrained by rusted steel plates creating a pathway to Les Preses Volcano Park.

Sant-Pau__008Nucli antic de Santa Pau

Nucli antic de Santa Pau: yet another tiny Jewish settlement built  between 13th and 14th centuries, with an abandoned castle in the middle

Sant-Pau__002view from Nucli antic de Santa Pau