Josean Alija (1978) began his career at the age of seventeen. Under the tutelage of the great contemporary masters in the restaurant industry he has been able to cultivate his own style. He has developed a purist style in which aromas, textures and flavours are main components, but also an avant-garde style that even the chef Paul Bocusse has identified as "one of the best cuisines in his life."
Alija, true to his love of challenges, intends to dazzle those who savour his work with the essence of the earth and its produce. He has built his cooking around this theme and his work has been recognized earning him multiple awards. Best Young Chef Award in 2000, Best International Chef by Identitá Golose in 2009 and Conceptual Innovation Award in 2010 are examples of his internationally acclaimed awards.
His creations are the roast duck foie gras with candied carrots (most artistic dish in 2002), casein whipped with strawberry and violet ice cream (most beautiful dish in 2003) or the cold juice of bitter cocoa with milk and anise ice cream (Best Dessert in 2004) have also been awarded, thus demonstrating the intensity and success of this young chef's career.
In recent years Alija has developed projects running parallel to his work in the kitchen, such as the Creativity Course in Arteleku with Juan Luis Moraza (2006)or the creation of a temporary garden with artist Artur Bossi (2007). He has also collaborated in research on cancer prevention based on nutrition with Dr. Jesus Garcia Foncillas (2008) and in eco-friendly events, such as the "green procurement" day organized by IHOBE in 2009.
The artist Jeff Koons, creator of one of the signature pieces of work in the Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, as Puppy is, refers to art as something that is not an object, but rather in the mind of the observer.
This same line of thought is what the restaurant Nerua wishes to convey, getting visitors to create their own dining experience, making the means to do so accessible to the diner.
Our language originates in reflection, coupled with innovation, and is transferred to all aspects of the restaurant, integrating the senses.