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In an interview for Upscale Living Magazine, I spoke with Head Chef Philippe Bourrel of Le Jardin in the iconic 5-star Le Richemond hotel in Geneva, Switzerland, and we discussed his approach to cuisine, signature dishes, inspiration and more.
Tell me a little bit about your philosophy and approach to cuisine at Le Jardin.
My aim is to please my guests and to make them discover local products. For instance, our fish comes mainly from Lake Geneva. We work with a fisherman, Mr. Christinat, who delivers it to us on a daily basis. Our head sommelier also selects local wines which are unknown but very good and our clients are happy to discover them. My cuisine is simple, fresh and modern, nothing sophisticated, and is really based on the product itself.
What motivated you to explore a culinary career, and where do you source your inspiration from?
My grandmother from Corsica used to cook a lot and we had memorable family dinners. I wanted to give joy like she did. I source inspiration from the market, and some products inspire me want to try a new recipe.
What are some of the signature dishes of your own creation at Le Jardin, and which is your favorite?
My signatures dishes include: Pike fish from leman lake Nantua style, vegetable and summer truffles; Saddle of lamb from Vessy, bulgur and pepper artichokes; Crab meat flavored citrus with avocado. My favorite is the Pike fish from leman lake Nantua style, vegetable and summer truffles because it’s a modernized version of a traditional dish.
For guests looking to experience the best of Le Jardin, what kind of menu would you suggest?
I think the 3-course menu we change each week is a good opportunity to experience the best of Le Jardin and the best of Geneva. I use only fresh and local products and from the starter to the dessert, guests are able to discover unusual recipes. I’m always open to creating something special for our guests, and I like the fact that sometimes they challenge me, asking me for something different.
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