MEET THE CHEF: FRED­ERIC CHABBERT

Hospitality News Middle East - - NEWS -

Last April, and in line with Kempin­ski’s com­mit­ment to bring­ing ex­cep­tional ex­pe­ri­ences from all over the world to its guests, Kempin­ski Sum­mer­land hosted the French Miche­lin-star chef

Fred­eric Chabbert, owner of the Dôme in Bel­gium and one of Hong Kong’s rev­o­lu­tion­ary tal­ents, at Can­de­labra in­ter­na­tional restau­rant for four days. HN had the chance to chat with him, and here’s what he told us

1. What does it mean to you ca­reer­wise to visit Kempin­ski Sum­mer­land Beirut for this special oc­ca­sion? The gen­eral man­ager of Kempin­ski Sum­mer­land Ho­tel and Re­sort, Daniele Vas­tolo and I worked to­gether in Kuala Lumpur in 2005, and we’ve been close friends since then. We’ve dis­cussed me vis­it­ing Le­banon to tai­lor-make some­thing for the Le­banese au­di­ence in the past and re­cently we de­cided that the time was now right for me to ven­ture into a new cui­sine – that of the Mediter­ranean, and specif­i­cally the Le­banese cui­sine. This special oc­ca­sion has cre­ated a new hori­zon for me. Dur­ing the visit I’ve dis­cov­ered Le­banese cui­sine and sim­ply fallen in love with it. To­day, af­ter this ex­pe­ri­ence, I can def­i­nitely promise all of my Le­banese guests that I’ll be in­dulging with Le­banese ingredients in my dishes.

2. Were you fa­mil­iar with Mediter­ranean cui­sine and how do you as­sess its dis­tinc­tive culi­nar y traits? I only dis­cov­ered this cui­sine three days ago when I had din­ner at Pier 78, the Mediter­ranean restau­rant lo­cated at Kempin­ski Sum­mer­land, but I can hon­estly say it’s truly suc­cu­lent! I loved the shar­ing cold and hot mezzes that have a huge va­ri­ety of cheese, veg­eta­bles and chicken, among other ingredients. I’ve also fallen in love with the dif­fer­ent spices which I’ll def­i­nitely be tak­ing back with me to the Dôme.

3. Do you have any plans to col­lab­o­rate with a Le­banese chef? Last month, Kempin­ski Sum­mer­land’s ex­ec­u­tive chef, Ge­orges Man­sour, vis­ited me in Antwerp, where he spent a week in the kitchens of the Dôme res­tau­rants. It was an amaz­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion! I would def­i­nitely like to col­lab­o­rate with him again and cook some sur­pris­ing cre­ations in both Le­banon and Bel­gium.

4. What fu­ture projects do you have planned? We are cur­rently in the process of fi­nal­iz­ing a new project that fo­cuses on wine. It’s still in the prepa­ra­tion phase, but will soon be ready. Longer term, I will def­i­nitely be ex­pand­ing my restau­rant and Le­banon could be on my radar! kempin­ski.com

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