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Hot List 2008

Senzone, Madrid

Address: 3 Plaza de la Independencia

Tel: 34-91-432-2911

Everything about the restaurant at the brand-new Hospes hotel, from its imperceptible entryway to its tiny kitchen to its chilly decor, suggests that the owners underestimated its 26-year-old chef, Francisco Morales. But he has quickly proved a major talent, and Senzone is the city's most buzzed-about table. Rare for a Spanish chef, Morales worships the vegetable, keeping it in its nearly natural state. Paper-thin slices of barely cooked calamari—delicately chewy like linguine—adorn a gorgeously crisp pile of haricots verts; for dessert, tender baby carrots, dusted with little more than "earth" (spinach powder), radiate sweetness. Morales has an equally deft hand with other ingredients, from the rich sauté of trompettes de la mort mushrooms topped with translucent slices of Iberian pancetta to fresh cod encrusted with scallions. Thanks to his sommelier wife, Rut, the wine list is just as thoughtful (entrées, $39–$48).

Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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