When Juan Mari told his mother he wanted to study catering and continue in the tradition of the family business, she tried to convince him to choose a career offering a better future. Sixty years later, the social prestige enjoyed by gastronomy is enormous, the change has been revolutionary and today many children encouraged by their parents dream of becoming great chefs. Juan Mari has lived this evolution in first person and has been a fundamental part of it. Arzak, the family eatery situated at the top of San Sebastian’s Alto de Miracruz, has become one of the world’s best restaurants. Today, the new generation has taken up the baton. Elena Arzak, Juan Mari’s daughter, now runs the restaurant and her father is gradually retiring. The time has come to look back, to take stock of a whole life; to analyse the transformation of traditional cuisine into the new cuisine d’auteur.