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Wed, 1 July 2015

16th World Gourmet Festival to Take Place in Bangkok 7-13 September 2015

Continuing on the success of past World Gourmet Festivals, the Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel (formerly the Four Seasons, Bangkok) will host this year’s 16th World Gourmet Festival from 7 – 13 September 2015.

Since its inception, the World Gourmet Festival has grown in prominence to feature an impressive line-up of some of the best chefs, winemakers and food experts from across the globe, all gathered together under one roof for a week-long celebration of outstanding cuisine.

The World Gourmet Festival supports HRH Princess Soamsawali's Save A Child's Life from AIDS Project under the auspices of the Thai Red Cross and Red Crescent Society.

THB 600 from the price of every World Gourmet dinner ticket, as well as proceeds from the World Gourmet live auction, will be donated to this charity.

Chefs Performing at World Gourmet Festival 2015 in Bangkok

Performing their culinary magic at the 16th Annual World Gourmet Festival are:

• Chef Francesc Rovira, Fonda Xesc, Gombrèn, Girona, Spain (1 Michelin Star);

• Chef Jean-Francois Berard, Hostellerie Berard, La Cadière d’Azur, Provence France (1 Michelin Star);

• Chef Francesc Gimeno Manduley, Bohemic Bistro, Barcelona, Spain;

• Pierre Crépaud, Crans Hotel Sancerre, Crans-Montana, Switzerland;

• Chef Patrick Raingeard, Cap Estel, Èze-Bord-De-Mer, French Riviera, France (1 Michelin Star);

• Chef Sean Connolly, Sean’s Kitchen, Adelaide, Australia; and

• Chef Hirofumi Imamura, Kazuo Okada Restaurant, Kowloon, Hong Kong (1 Michelin Star).

World Gourmet Festival 2015 - Chef Profiles

Chef Francesc Rovira, Fonda Xesc, Gombrèn, Girona, Spain: Like many great chefs, Michelin-star Chef Francesc learned the art of cooking at a very young age from his mother, working at the family owned village inn ‘La Fonda’ specialized in traditional Catalan cuisine.

After finishing high school, he enrolled at the ‘Escola d’Hosteleria de Barcelona’ in order to develop his culinary skills and extend his knowledge.

On graduating from the culinary academy, Chef Francesc worked in a number of prestigious restaurants alongside many famous chefs, most notably the legendary Santi Santamaria, the first Catalan to be awarded three Michelin stars and a seminal influence on Chef Francesc’s own cuisine.

Chef Francesc returned to ‘La Fonda’ and began introducing new dishes while the kitchen was still in the hands of his mother. He and his sister finally took over and elevated the kitchen inn into an acclaimed restaurant which was awarded one Michelin star in 2009.

Mushrooms are a vital ingredient in Catalan cuisine as the local area has plentiful supply and they are probably his signature ingredient.

‘La Fonda Xesc’ is located on a building that dates back to 1730 in Gombrèn, a small village in the Catalan Pyrenees. The restaurant, nestled in a picturesque landscape, is an oasis of authentic Catalan tradition set apart from the modern world.

Chef Jean-François Bérard, Hostellerie Bérard & Spa, La Cadière d’Azur, Provence France: Chef Jean-François Bérard had his first culinary exposure at his parent’s boutique hotel, Hostellerie Bérard and Spa, located on a hilltop village instilled with the magic of Provence, La Cadière d’Azur.

Attending Lenotre School in Paris and consequently gaining a lot of work experiences with various master chefs at Michelin starred restaurants such as Frederic Anton at 3 Michelin star Pre catelan, Helene Darroze at 2 Michelin star la table d’helene, Roger Verger – serge Chenet at 3 star Moulin de Mougins, Jacques Chibois at 1 star le gray d’albion and Guissepina at 2 star Balsi rossa, Chef Jean-Francois’ culinary skills were honed with the help of some of the very best chefs in the world.

Jean-François’ father, Chef René Bérard, trained him from an early age. Teaching him about cooking using only the finest ingredients sourced in their garden and the locality. Both father and son have received various accolades including the ultimate Michelin star for their restaurant.

Working as a family and team, the Bérards - including the mother Daniele and sister Sandra - have instilled this exceptional Hostellerie Bérard & Spa with their own very special magic.

Chef Francesc Gimeno Manduley, Bohemic Bistro, Barcelona, Spain: At the end of 2006, Chef Francesc Gimeno Manduley opened a tapas bar, Bohemic Bistro, which progressively became a restaurant in which he expressed his overflowing creativity in a variety of styles with inspirations drawn from his time in renowned establishments.

Chef Francesc’s Bohemic restaurant plays on high-concept miniature presentation of a variety of dishes for the diners to choose from after a pasta sized appetizer and complete the meal with a dessert.

Chef Pierre Crépaud, LeCrans Hotel & Spa, Crans-Montana, Switzerland: Describing himself as simply a cook, Chef Pierre’s cuisine is mainly dictated by mother nature. His cuisine is based on flavor with theatrical presentation.

Growing up in the mountains of Drome, he spent his childhood days with his great-uncle growing vegetables and loved the idea of eating food that they had grown. He spent two years as a chef’s apprentice and then another two years gaining professional qualifications.

Honing his culinary skills working with various hotels and restaurants in France and Switzerland, he finally settled at Crans-Montana and has been the Chef de Cuisine at Restaurant LeMontBlanc at LeCrans Hotel & Spa which received a Gault & Millau award in 2010.

Chef Patrick Raingeard, Cap Estel, Èze-Bord-De-Mer, French Riviera, France: Inheriting his love of cuisine from his grandmother, Chef Patrick pursued his interest and found his way to the culinary world.

Working side by side with renowned chefs such as Alain Passard of the 3 Michelin Stars L’Arpège and Jacques Maximin of the 2 Michelin stars Ledoyen and The Elysée Lenôtre, the experiences gave him confidence and motivation which resulted to his first Michelin star award for the Zebra Square restaurant in Monaco.

The Table of Patrick Raingeard restaurant received its Michelin star in 2013.

His five years of working with a Japanese chef gave him taste for exotic savors and he is a staunch advocate of local produce depending on seasonality.

Chef Sean Connolly, Sean’s Kitchen, Adelaide, Australia: Chef Sean Connolly is one of Australia and New Zealand’s most well-respected chefs, with a growing list of accomplishments and awards to his name.

A true visionary with a wealth of experience and uncompromising drive, his latest endeavor is the opening of his first restaurant in Adelaide, South Australia – the aptly named Sean’s Kitchen.

A New York-inspired Brasserie restaurant offering dishes which showcase the outstanding local produce, Sean’s Kitchen located in Adelaide Casino, won Best New Restaurant in The City Awards within a year of its opening.

As any other master chefs, Chef Sean got his inspiration from his grandmother which influenced his food today. His formal training began at an early age of 13, taking on a Chef’s Apprenticeship at a couple of 5-star hotel and restaurants in the UK.

His culinary stints include aboard the luxury cruise liner, QE2, 5-star hotel such as Park Lane (now Sheraton on The Park), and other standalone restaurants.

He hosted the critically acclaimed 13 part TV series called My Family Feast, a celebration of Australia’s love of food and family life, which won the Best TV Show at the 2010 Australian Food Media Awards, plus Best TV Series for food and wine culture at the world TV Food & Wine Festival. With his cookbook, My Family Feast, he received the best celebrity cookbook in the world at the 2011 Paris Book Fair. 

Chef Hirofumi Imamura, Kazuo Okada Restaurant, Kowloon, Hong Kong: Born in Japan, Chef Hirofumi mastered his fundamental cooking skills at his hometown Fukujima’s Japanese restaurant Kawashou then journeyed to New York where he excelled as a sushi chef after gaining his Fugu license in 2001 and promptly moved up to become an executive chef at Sakagura New York.

As the executive chef, he honed his insights in pairing food and sake and was awarded his Sake sommelier license in 2004 and created a sake pairing menu with 200 types of sake which resulted to an award for Sakagura’s as No. 1 at Zagat Survey in the Night Life category and was one considered one of the most popular restaurants in New York.

Moving from New York to Las Vegas in 2006, he joined a Japanese restaurant at a 5-star hotel and turned the restaurant into one of the most talked-about Japanese eateries in Las Vegas.

This was followed by a stint in Macau where he impressed gourmands with his mastery of teppanyaki, robatayaki, sushi and traditional Japanese kaiseki.

He now heads the one star Michelin Kazuo Okada restaurant in Kowloon, Hong Kong.

One of Chef Hirofumi’s culinary philosophies is the belief that every dish should stimulate each of the five senses, including sense of smell, texture of ingredients and the sounds while dining. See also: Exclusive HD Video Interview with Chef Hirofumi Imamura.

MHG, Anantara, Bangkok, World Gourmet, Gourmet, Wine, Chef

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