Federico Ferrero at Diverxo, where they tear the thighs of live pigeons
Federico Ferrero at Diverxo, where they tear the thighs of live pigeons

"Guess the riddle: who is the genius who tears thighs from live pigeons and who is that other genius who serenely writes about them, as if it were the harvest of chamomile? For the series: go to work in the mine instead of looking for publicity like that “.

We will not tell you who is the genius who rips thighs from live pigeons (lie, he is David Muñoz from Madrid, according to the exaggerated opinion of someone "the best chef in Europe"). Just as we won't even tell you who the other one is who "serenely writes" about it (another lie, it is Federico Ferrero by Masterchef 3, now the only food critic - it seems - whose reviews are worth reading, especially when they are slated).

The first is because we know little about Dabiz, as David Muñoz wants to be called, and we have never been to Diverxo, his restaurant opened in the Spanish capital in 2007, three Michelin stars won at an impressive rate: the first at 29, the second at 31, the third at 33.

The second is because we talked about it a lot, always ironically or sarcastically, of course, but with the right amount of sympathy and esteem that many perhaps have not grasped.

However, despite having decided to let go, the assist of the aforementioned thighs was too greedy, too juicy to even ignore that.

In fact, we know well who has lashed out with so much disdain against the alleged cutters of live pigeons: Paolo Marchi.

Paolo Marchi
Paolo Marchi

You all know, right? No, he is not the President of the League for the Protection of Live Pigeon Legs or Happy Pheasant Wings, no. He is the creator, the patron of Identità Golose, one of the most important local food events.

Originally a sports journalist, he then smelled the air - or rather the smell of roast - that swirled around the world of food, he understood the trend, smelled the deal and skilfully regenerated himself, passing from healthy sport to unhealthy eating solace. Now he is one of the most important food critics in Italy.

Who was providentially angered by the new review of the talented Italian critic who has recently been distinguishing himself for the witty and savory criticisms outside the pack, out of the treat and licking of the starred chef on duty.

And what did our young and esteemed critic go to to trigger the intervention of such a great representative of the eno-gastronomic world?

This time it even happened on the set of Eyes wide shut without his knowledge!

After being caught fish in the face on one side and served without emotion on the other, he thought it best, in the wake of such benevolent popularity, to abandon the patriotic shores and temporarily go to Spanish soil, to review another starred restaurant.

So ours landed right at DiverXo, the restaurant where "even the royals of Spain were put on the waiting list". And in the particular Spanish restaurant where the watchword is "amaze or die!", Our reviewer's most daring predictions would not even come close to what he would later be subjected to.


First of all, as soon as they see him, they think it best to let him enter from the service room, indeed, as he himself writes, from the "sordid closet of the dishwasher, flooded with dishes, and to the messy kitchen, crammed beyond belief with pots, cooks, and thick smoke ". Just to get it into the mood of the club.

He is then introduced into an environment that truly the set of Kubrick's film in comparison is the laughing alpine pasture of Heidi's friend shepherd: huge pigs with wings hang from the ceiling, while crowds of black butterflies stare at him sinister and menacing from walls and corridors..

Then shut up in the darkness of a sort of dressing room with candlelight only, well hidden from the other patrons (the restaurateur's goodness) by thick red velvet blankets, ours is approached by a sinister waitress "with a black tailcoat, and lips painted in the same bright red as the sneakers "that immediately plays attack and, to prevent him from showing off his famous speech, literally shoves ice-cold alcohol down his throat and" with rudeness ", saving himself.

Then, skilfully and quickly, she finishes stunning him by literally taking him by the nose, putting under the same "a Guacamole of tomato, fennel and avocado, with steamed octopus and veal marrow": one zero for the waitress at the report by David Muñoz.

David Muñoz, Diverxo
David Muñoz, Diverxo

But at this point, it is not clear whether as a result of the guacamole or what other substance, the delirium begins, literally, or rather the vision of a propitiatory movie.

Says the promising critic: "Suddenly the lights go on, four hands fold up the curtains and reveal the other diners. Couples caught in intimacy quickly recompose themselves, the music rises to a very high volume, stunning, and waiters appear naked jumping on the tables, pushing the food by force into the mouth of the customers, through a golden funnel.

(…) A leg of pigeon is detached from a live animal and cooked over hot embers, directly on the plate.

It is a continuous exchange of chairs between old, young, men, women, fat, thin, in a whirlwind of kisses underlined by the launch of raw eggs. A projector repeats on the ceiling the footage of a camera which, from the bathrooms, sends back the images of those who vomit into the sink…”.

Ferrero, practically, having ended up in a restaurant whose first goal is to amaze at all costs (as the name already states), as well as serving excellent dishes that our promptly praises, simply tells of a video, a short projection to which the customers of the original restaurant were subjected, a film that included, in addition to the incriminated passage of the thigh and relative pigeon, also the stomach problems, and relative release, of a customer who had eaten a little too heavily.

Stuff like this, to amaze, a publicity stunt, a marketing operation, nothing more: in fact, the film is presented as a simple outline to create a murky, particular, original atmosphere, in short, to somehow distinguish the place from the mass of the other stellates.

That's all. A movie.

Moreover, our young but not at all inexperienced reviewer, in the midst of all this slaughter (cinema), in all this murky (virtual), in all this lust (and here we do not know), does not lose either the light of reason or the 'objectivity.

Although stunned by the vision of the refined film and by the treatment of the dining room staff, he still manages to notice, for example, "a few too many fingerprints accompanying the dishes and some jams in the service", but above all not to be distracted too much by skilled moves aimed at surprising.

That is, he remains lucid, objective and rational and perfectly capable of evaluating what is happening around him without being distracted by coarse films or skilful settings.

Objectivity and rationality that others, on the other hand, would seem to have lost even just by reading the account of a banal, albeit bloody, cinematic vision.

Because now, our young and talented reviewer, has become like the poor pigeon: he makes visibility, he likes. So let's strike while the iron is hot. All.

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