The 13th annual World Gourmet Festival, set to
take place at the Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok, will take place
between 3 and 9 September 2012.
Since its inception, the World Gourmet Festival
has grown in prominence to feature an extraordinary line-up of
some of the best chefs, winemakers and food experts from across
the globe, all under one roof for a week-long celebration of
outstanding food and superb wines.
Chefs currently confirmed to participate
• Shiqin Chen, La Rei, Il Boscareto, Piedmont,
• Diego Irrera, 1884 Restaurante, Mendoza, Argentina
• Galvin Lim, Les Amis, Singapore
• Igor Macchia, La Credenza,
• Michael Mina, MICHAEL MINA, San Francisco,
• Víctor Quintillà Imbernón, Lluerna, Barcelona, Spain
• Masa Shimakawa, ONYX, Los Angeles, USA
• Frédéric Vardon, LE
39V, Paris, France
The Chefs @ World
Gourmet Festival 2013
Shiqin Chen, La Rei, Il
Boscareto, Piedmont, Italy: Shiqin Chen set out on his career as
chef as a boy. Born in 1980 in Shanghai, his desire to travel
spurred him to visit Europe where, by mere chance, he attended a
course for foreigners at the Italian Culinary Insitute for
Foreigners. The course introduced him to France and Spain. Various
internships followed, allowing Chen to come of age in some of
Italy’s best Michelin-starred restaurants, from Il Pescatore in
Canneto sull’Oglio to the Antica Corona Reale in Cervere, where he
acquired ten years’ experience working alongside Chef Gianpiero
Vivalda. After proving his worth in the kitchens as a highly
skilled chef, he joined La Rei, the gourmet restaurant of Il
Boscareto Resort & Spa. Chen is now an expert in
Piedmontese cuisine, but gives it a new twist with his own unique
brand of cuisine.
Diego Irrera, 1884
Restaurante, Mendoza, Argentina: The beloved Francis
Mallman restaurant in Argentina’s Mendoza Valley, where Diego
Irrera is head chef, is a tribute to the wines of the region
paired with Andean cuisine, employing Incan clay oven cooking and
grilling techniques for their exquisite meats. Italian-born Diego
has worked his way up the ranks at Francis Mallman establishments
in Buenos Aires, Patagonia and Mendoza, coming to embody over time
the wood fire and cast iron cooking style behind the earthy good
food of Argentina’s Indians and gauchos.
Galvin Lim, Les Amis, Singapore: Les Amis’
Executive Chef, Galvin Lim, began his culinary odyssey as a
student at the SHATEC Institute. After graduation, he worked his
way up through the ranks at Shangri-La’s now defunct La Tour Restaurant, where he spent eight years under the tutelage of
Mentor-Chef David Mollicorne, before joining the Au Jardin opening
team as Resident Chef. Over the years, he has trained in some of
the world’s most renowned kitchens, such as Lameloise in Burgundy,
Le Gavroche in London, and Les Elysées du Vernet in Paris under
Alain Solivérès. His style of French cooking at Au Jardin
emphasises the balance and contrast of flavours and textures
whilst using a combination of various products.
La Credenza, Piedmont, Italy: Igor Macchia’s passion for food
and creative signature cuisine started many years ago. After many
years spent experimenting and creating his personal style, both as
a chef and pastry chef, he finally began a co-ownership with La
Credenza in 2005, and was awarded one Michelin Star the following
Igor also managed to find the time to nourish another
great passion of his: the Eastern world and culture. He travelled through China and Japan, India and Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam
and the Maldives, not only to promote his culinary art, but also
to learn more about Eastern cultures. The result is his original
blend of colours and tastes, textures and shapes in the form of
his most creative and ambitious recipes.
Michael Mina, MICHAEL
MINA, San Francisco, USA: Born in Cairo, Egypt and raised in
Ellensburg, Washington, Michael Mina has had a long love affair
with the kitchen, creating memorable dining experiences for guests
from a very early age. Michael’s epicurean journey began in 1987
at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park.
start of his career, Michael was presented with the opportunity of
a lifetime with then Executive Chef of the Bel Air Hotel in Los
Angeles, George Morrone. The two were asked to develop a concept
and create a menu for an upscale seafood restaurant in San
Francisco – the city Michael had dreamed of calling home one day.
Michael’s culinary and business vision led to the founding of
his company, Mina Group, with partner Andre Agassi in 2002. Under
the auspices of Mina Group, he has opened 18 concept restaurants
and a lounge concept.
Michael has been honored with
numerous accolades, including the Michelin two-star award and San
Francisco Chronicle’s four-star award for the original Michael
Mina at San Francisco’s Westin St. Francis on Union Square,
Michelin’s one-star award for Michael Mina in Las Vegas, and
induction into the American Gaming Association’s Hall of Fame in
2007. Additionally, he is an esteemed member of Bocuse d’Or USA
and the C.I.A. Society of Fellows. He has been a featured guest chef
at the James Beard House numerous times; cooked for three U.S.
presidents: Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama; and has
been a guest speaker at C.I.A. in Hyde Park and at other culinary
institutes in California.
Víctor Quintillà Imbernón, Lluerna,
Barcelona, Spain: A true Barcelona native, Víctor Quintillà
Imbernón began his culinary journey at the Escola d’Hosteleria I
Restauració de Barcelona, after which he apprenticed and worked at
some of the most important restaurants in the region, including
the Michelin-starred El Reno and famed temple of modern
gastronomy, El Bulli. His own restaurant, Lluerna, in Santa Coloma
de Gramenet, which he runs with his sommelier wife, Mar,
specialises in seasonal, Mediterranean-influenced degustation
menus with dishes like beef entrecôte with white eggplant; and dry aged ox with mustard parmentier and endives.
Onyx, California, USA: Hakodate, Japan may be an ocean away from
Los Angeles, but it’s just a dinner seating away at Onyx at Four
Seasons Hotel Westlake Village, California, where Chef de Cuisine Masa Shimakawa holds
Unlike many bitten by the culinary bug, Shimakawa had no intention
of becoming a chef when he started as a dishwasher in his teens.
Soon there was no stopping him, including study at the Hakodate
Professional Cooking School and his first job as a sushi chef in
Tokyo. It took him five years to get comfortable with the
discipline, he says, at which point he landed at the first of two
sushi restaurants in Montreal in 1991. Positions in Chicago and
New York followed before he found his way to Four Seasons.
Shimakawa leads five highly skilled
cooks preparing sushi as well as hot and cold dishes in classical
style in the restaurant’s exhibition kitchen.
Ever cognisant of
the importance of innovation, Shimakawa creates thoroughly
original dishes using western ingredients in eastern style, such
as Maguro “Tataki” with seared Ahi tuna, spicy corn salsa and
sweet sesame soy, and Miso Gin-Dara with Saikyo miso-marinated
black cod and sweet soy drizzle.
Frédéric Vardon, Le 39V,
Paris, France: Frederic Vardon was born in Normandy into a
family of charcutiers and farmers. His passion for cuisine was
passed down to him from his grandmother, who instilled in him a
passion for cuisine made with love and made for sharing.
completing an apprenticeship with Jean-Pierre Morot-Gaudry and
training with Alain Dutournier, in 1988 Frédéric Vardon joined
Alain Chapel’s culinary team at Mionnay. This experience confirmed
all that his grandmother had taught him, and cemented his deep
attachment to French cuisine and his love of great products. In
1994, he left to team up with Alain Ducasse, where he spent 14
years working at Ducasse’s renowned restaurants around the world
including Spoon, Benoit Tokyo, and Alain Ducasse at the
Frédéric Vardon now heads the team at Le 39V, a
peaceful haven built on the rooftops of 39, Avenue George V in
Paris. Awarded its first Michelin star in February 2012, Le 39V
offers guests a cuisine that is tasty and honest, bringing them
the best flavours of the best products available.
confirmed to participate in World Gourmet Festival events are
Master of Wine
Jeannie Cho Lee, who will be conducting a
Wine Masterclass, Eleveur de Fromage Jean-Francois Antony, who will be
hosting cheese-tasting events, and a cigar and rum-pairing event
with Patoro Cigars and Eastory Rums.
Once again, the
World Gourmet Festival will support HRH Princess Soamsawali’s Save A Child’s Life from AIDS Project under the
auspices of the Thai Red Cross Society. A portion of every ticket
price, as well as proceeds from an auction, will be donated to
Notice: HD video interview about this event to
be uploaded next week, so
do check back.
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