International culinary stars descend in Bangkok Sept. 19-25 for Thailand’s 17th World Gourmet Festival at Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel.
By Atthasith Khupratakul.
An impressive line-up of leading international chefs will again be gathering in the Thai capital for the 17th World Gourmet Festival (WGF) this month. The annual event will be hosted at Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel from Sept. 19 to 25. The full line up of chefs at the 17th WGF are from the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 by San Pellegrino. They are:
Chef Anthony Genovese
Italian chef, 2-Michelin Star Restaurant Il Pagliaccio, Rome, Italy
Originally born in France with South-Italian origins, Genovese started his career in France, working in the two Michelin-starred Château Eza Restaurant on the French Riviera. He also worked in several two and three Michelin-starred restaurants while he lived in France and Italy and spent several years at the three Michelin-star Enoteca Pinchiorri in Florence. He then became head chef at Enoteca Pinchiorri in Tokyo for a year. Upon his return in 2003, he settled in his restaurant Il Pagliaccio, in an 18th century house in Rome, and soon received two Michelin stars. Gifted cook, genius and generous, Anthony Genovese named his restaurant after the opera Pagliacci by Leoncavallo.
Chef Kanesaka Shinji
2-Michelin Star Chef of Shinji by Kanesaka
As the first premium sushi restaurant from Tokyo’s Ginza district in Japan and the first outlet in Greater China by sushi maestro Shinji Kanesaka, Shinji by Kanesaka at Crown Towers, City of Dreams, delights sushi aficionados who are looking for the most authentic and the finest omakase (chef’s selection) experience in town. The restaurant joined the ranks of Michelin-starred establishments in the MICHELIN Guide Hong Kong Macau 2016 after only nine months of operation. Chef Kanesaka is one of the most celebrated and youngest sushi chefs in Japan, having launched his first outlet “Sushi Kanesaka” at the age of 28 in the highly competitive Ginza district in 2000, after a decade of rigid training at Kyubey, one of the oldest and highly-regarded sushi establishments in the capital of Japan. Sushi Kanesaka has been on the Michelin awarded list since 2008, and was one of just 22 Michelin-star awarded sushi restaurants in Tokyo in 2015. The restaurant is considered sushi Mecca by his legion of fans, which include country leaders and international celebrities as well as famed Kabuki actors and actresses.
Chef Mauro Colagreco
Argentine chef, 2-Michelin star restaurant Mirazur in Menton, France
As a newly qualified chef, Colagreco headed to France and worked with Bernard Loiseau, Alain Passard at L’Arpège, Alain Ducasse at the Hotel Plaza Athénée before finally spending a year at Le Grand Véfour. All of them three Michelin stars Chefs. Colagreco, then established Mirazur in Menton and just six months later received the ‘Revelation of the Year’ award, a brand new category to recognize his merits from Gault & Millau. Less than a year later he had earned his first Michelin star. Mirazur became officially one of the premier restaurants in the world listed in The S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants. In the same year, and Colagreco was awarded “Chef of the Year” by the prestigious Gault & Millau restaurant guide.
Chef Hideaki Sato
1-Michelin Star Chef at Ta Vie, Hong Kong
Japanese born chef Hideaki Sato launches his restaurant Ta Vie, where he wants to apply Japanese cuisine philosophy to French cuisine. Despite having over ten years of experience in French cuisine, Chef Sato finds himself increasingly drawn towards his native Japanese cuisine. With this new direction, he was able to make the move to 3 Michelin starred restaurant Nihonryori Ryugin in Tokyo. He worked 3 years under the careful guidance of Chef Seiji Yamamoto, and in June 2012, he was chosen to come to Hong Kong and lead the first overseas branch of Ryugin, Tenku Ryugin. Chef Sato gained an impressive 2 Michelin stars within just 6 months of opening of Tenku Ryugin. In 2014, the restaurant made it onto the coveted San Pellegrino list of Asia’s Best 50 Restaurants. In 2015, he opened Ta Vie where he is creating his unique dishes through his diverse culinary backgrounds, French and Japanese, sourcing and incorporating Asian ingredients and products into his cooking. He also gained Ta Vie’s first Michelin star in the same year. In 2016, Ta Vie is ranked on the list of Asia’s Best 50 Restaurants.
Chef Josean Alija
1-Michelin Star Spanish Chef of Nerua Restaurant from Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain
Alija was acknowledged the Best International Chef by Identità Golose in 2009 and one year later, he received the Award for Conceptual Innovation. In 2011, Nerua received its first star in the Michelin Guide and 3 Suns in the Repsol Guide. The International Academy of Gastronomy also awarded him the Prix du Chef de L’Avenir in 2011 (The Chef of the Future Award). Cuaderno Matoses selected Nerua as the second best restaurant in 2014, after visiting over 350 restaurants in more than 20 countries. They also named Josean Alija as the best chef of the year. In 2015, the prestigious magazine Restaurant included Nerua for the first time on its list of the world’s 100 best restaurants and in 2016 Nerua rose to number 55 on the prestigious selection.
Chef Marco Stabile
1-Michelin Star Chef, “Ora d’Aria” at Florence, Italy
Marco Stabile is a young chef from Pontedera, Tuscany, who has quickly risen to prominence in Italy. He developed his skill for subtle invention whilst working in some of Italy’s finest kitchens, including the famed “Baghino” in Prato, “Il Salotto del Chianti”, the Antinori-owned “Osteria di Passignano”, the Beringer Blass-managed “Cavaliere del Castello di Gabbiano”, “Il Paese dei Campanelli” and “Il Chiasso dei Portici” to name just a few. His final stepping-stone before opening Ora d’Aria, where he is both resident head chef and co-owner, was his work at “Arnolfo” in 2 Michelin-star, Colle di Val d’Elsa. Marco is also an occasional teacher at some of the Italy’s most celebrated culinary schools, such as those in Jesi, Montecatini Terme and “Accademia del Gusto” in Arezzo.
Chef Ana Ros
Chef at Hisa Franko, Kobarid, Slovenia
Working in the family restaurant of Hisa Franko, overlooking the sloping hills of the Slovenian countryside is Ana Ros, a one of a kind chef – who, by stretching her imagination through the exploration of the beautiful Slovenian countryside, has developed her own unique cuisine. Chef Ana is the co-owner of Hisa Franko, her husband Valter’s, familial guesthouse in the alpine Soca Valley on the border of Italy. Her stoves have been manned by Michelin-starred chef Mauro Colagreco while Chef Guzman landed in the Michelin-starred Septime kitchen in Paris. The flowery, herbal, yet delicate and precise nature of Chef Ana’s cooking has made her the only woman, so far, to have joined the Cook it Raw group of chefs.
Chef Dharshan Munidasa
Ministry of Crab, Sri Lanka
Chef Dharshan founded Nihonbashi and the Ministry of Crab, two of Sri Lanka’s most successful restaurants, with both appearing on Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants. Dharshan also received the similar honour from ‘Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants’ that ranked both Nihonbashi and Ministry of Crab on their prestigious list. In 2014, he began Kaema Sutra, a contemporary Sri Lankan cuisine restaurant that draws inspiration from traditional Sri Lankan food, stemming from local street fare. All of Dharshan’s restaurants have a strong ingredient focus, employing the use of fresh local produce alongside Japanese culinary principles. Two of his restaurants also employ a no-freezer policy emphasizing the use of fresh produce and guaranteeing the quality of all his dishes.
TV Personality in Hanoi, Vietnam
Born in New Zealand to a Chinese father and Egyptian mother, Bobby Chinn has lived a very international life – educated in England, he worked in the USA (on both the east and west coasts), then traveled the world, and finally settled in Vietnam in 1996. Along the way he developed a passion for food and cooking as well as seeking authentic flavors from across the world and he is now a renowned master of modern, global cuisine. He opened two award-winning restaurants in Vietnam – Restaurant Bobby Chinn in Hanoi (2001) and Bobby Chinn Saigon in Ho Chi Minh (2011), before closing them and relocating to London in 2014. Here, Bobby created the modern Vietnamese concept when he launched The House of Ho in the UK capital. He has also been the ambassador promoting Sustainable Seafood Production for the WWF since 2012, and was appointed Vietnam Tourism Ambassador in Europe, in July 2014.
WGF is coordinated and overseen by Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel’s executive chef, Nicolas Schneller, along with Shintaro chef Satoshi Sawada, Biscotti Cchef Daniele Bettini, Madison chef Anchalee Ponrungsit, and Spice Market chef, Warinthorn Sumrithphon. Each guest chef will host two evenings in one of the hotel’s award-winning restaurants. This year’s WGF will see the introduction of exclusive Sake tasting and pairing with Thai dishes event with the sake master from Miyasaka Brewing Company. Additional events to be added this year include Parfum Berger, a new concept combining classic fragrance matching with excellent wines and unique dishes. A Cocktail Master Class, Gin Master Class and Blue Friday with Johnnie Walker Blue Label will also be introduced at this years festival.
The World Gourmet Brunch – one of the most popular events of the festival – will take place on the last day of the event on Sunday, Sept. 25.. The inimitable Chef Bobby Chinn, renowned TV personality from Hanoi, will entertain diners at this event. Proceeds from the auction held throughout the week plus THB 600 per dinner ticket sold will be donated to the charity.