People - Pierre Gagnaire

by WIFM
Pierre GagnairePierre Gagnaire is a multi-Michelin star chef renowned for his contemporary and innovative take on French cuisine.

Gagnaire recently returned to Japan to open his eponymous restaurant at the ANA InterContinental Tokyo in Akasaka. Born in the Loire in 1950, Gagnaire has enjoyed worldwide culinary success with eight restaurants in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. In 2008 his celebrated Paris restaurant was named the third-best restaurant in the world by Restaurant Magazine UK. He lives in Paris with his wife and children.

Your personal style?
My aim is to have a simple, yet comfortable way of life, sometimes even refined but never a fake one. I do not try to act or create a particular character. I hate the lack of simplicity you find in certain people.

First thing you ever made?
My first dish was a Poulet au Vinaigre, which is a specialty from Lyons, cooked in special vinegar that is distilled in a wine barrel.

Luxury you can’t live without?
The freedom to work.

Favorite place to visit in Japan?
Okinawa because of the climate, the atmosphere, and the local people’s approach to food. The first time I went there was 20 years ago.

Personal grooming routine?
I don’t have a special routine, but I always enjoy having my beard shaved at an old grooming salon called Marc Delacre, at 17 Avenue George V, in Paris.

Where you most feel at home?
In Paris because that is where my apartment is located. There I have my family, my dog, my books, the Bois de Boulogne, where I jog. Paris has become my home.

Best gift you’ve ever received?
The love of my wife and our children.

Favorite websites? I enjoy reading Le Monde online; it is an excellent French newspaper. I am not too keen on visiting food websites. Browsing the Internet is, for me, a way to relax and gain some knowledge, not to work.

Favorite meal?
I have no particular favorite meal in terms of special foods, although I like eating fresh seasonal products, shellfish, plenty of vegetables and a good red meat. I would have to say my best meal would be the right meal with the right people at the right time—which is very hard to obtain.

Twitter or not?
Not.

Future plans?
To stay healthy and continue deserving the trust put in me by the people around me.

Pierre Gagnaire Tokyo
35/F, ANA InterContinental Tokyo
1-12-33 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Tel: 03-3505-1111
www.pierregagnaire.com