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Q&A: Two-Michelin-starred French Chef Patrick Jeffroy

Bangkok gets its fair share of dining pop-ups and guest chefs every month, and while it’s impossible to sit down with every one of them, some are simply too good to miss. This week, The St. Regis Bangkok is flying in two-Michelin-starred Chef Patrick Jeffroy for guests to experience his inventive and audacious cuisine, inspired by flavours of his hometown Brittany. The guest Chef has exclusively designed a 6-course lunch and 8-course dinner menu for Jojo, the hotel’s flagship Italian restaurant. From 19 to 24 March 2018, catch Chef Patrick Jeffroy at The St. Regis Bangkok where he takes you to Carantec in France with his divine culinary feats.

After his first session of kitchen takeover, Chef Patrick Jeffroy takes a moment to chat to us about his cooking philosophy, the dishes we can expect (think mussels with saffron custard, pressed crab with coconut milk and duck supreme with spiced wine poached pear), and the most difficult ingredient he has worked with.

Talk us through some of the dishes you’ve prepared for Jojo.

The dishes are based on what I’m doing in my restaurant in France (L’hôtel de Carantec Restaurant Patrick Jeffroy), but also based on my travels. I’ve created dishes using curry and coconut as I pick up ideas and local ingredients from my travels.

Pressed crab, Coconut Milk and Curry, Jerusalem Artichokes, Wakame
Do you enjoy Thai food and do you draw inspiration from Asian cuisine?

I love Thai food. Vietnamese [food] as well, as I find the cooking style very refined. I’m very fond of Asian cuisine in general.

How would you describe your cooking philosophy?

I respect the base ingredients. My inspiration comes not only from my travels, but also from the season. What I mean is the seasonal products I work with – everything has to be fresh.

Sea bass, Herb Butter, Potato ‘Bonbons’
What is the most difficult ingredient to work with?

I wouldn’t say the most difficult, but for me, the most delicate ingredient to work with is fish. If you overcook fish for one or two seconds, you lose all the flavour and texture. But it’s also a very exciting ingredient to work with because every fish is different, so you handle each of them differently, which makes it challenging as well.

Tell us about flavours of Brittany, and what do you personally love about it?

I’m lucky because my restaurant in Carantec is located by the sea, and at the back there’s land so there’s lots of vegetables. So I have the freshest fish and vegetables to work with everyday.

Celeriac and Lemon Blinis, Gilthead Seabeam, Celeriac Remoulade, Green Apply Jelly
What keeps you motivated and driven these days?

I’m 66 years old already but I’m still learning everyday. I try to find new products whenever I travel and keep myself motivated by constantly discovering new things.

When you’re invited as the guest Chef in a different country, do you feel the need to tweak recipes for the local palate?

I don’t really change the recipes depending where I’m cooking, but what products I get. Say if the cauliflowers here [in Thailand] are more bitter than cauliflowers in France, I would then tweak the ingredients I use, just a little bit.

Do you have plans to expand, perhaps with an overseas branch?

Most definitely. I’m looking for opportunities – it just has to be in the right location.

Jojo, The St. Regis Bangkok, 159 Rajadamri Road, Bangkok, +662 207 7777.