& GASTRONOMIC FOOTMARKS
allow me to introduce myself in two stories…
FIRST, THERE WAS A TOUCH BY AN ARTICHOKE
Solingen [NRW], Germany, late summer 1968: In the allotment garden of my grandfather, something unusual happened, at least unusual in these times. There was a cooked and mysteriously smelling »something« on the garden table, that was quite unknown in culinary sad Germany until then. But I absolutely wanted to eat it because my grandfather had already started to eat it. He had peeled off a few leaves of it, had dipped them into a sauce and then sucked it out.
We are talking about an »artichoke«, which was generally thought to be weed in the neighborhood. My grandfather had learned how to eat artichokes with vinaigrette during his war imprisonment in France and they were one of the first edible plants he cultivated in his garden. Already as a 3-year-old boy I liked these artichokes very much and today I consider this experience to be jointly responsible for my pronounced interest in tasty foodstuff and culinary delights.
Since the beginning of 1991, I am living and working [apart from some temporary, job-related side-trips] in Munich. In those days, the Master Sommelier Hubert Notais, with whom I had previously been able to work in the Intercontinental Hotel in Stuttgart, fortunately opened me the doors of the legendary Restaurant »Aubergine« by Eckart Witzigmann.
Starting as a chef de rang I was trained by the unique restaurant manager Gesumino Pireddu. After more than four years, I unfortunately had to leave the »Aubergine« because of the closure in October 1995 as the last restaurant manager of this culinary jewel. Unquestionably a milestone in my gastronomic career…
Further stations & milestones of my professional career before and after [among others]:
· Haus Striepen | Solingen | Germany [vocational training]
· Hotel Panorama | Bad Reichenhall | Germany
· Bristol Hotel Kempinki Berlin | Germany
· Opt Art Home Service für Feinschmecker GmbH | Munich | Germany
· Vinothek La Cave Steines | Erding | Germany
· Via Bene GmbH [owner] | Cologne | Germany
· Self-employed gastronomic service provider | Munich | Germany
· Hanner | Mayerling | Austria
· Weinhaus Neuner | Munich | Germany
· mediafoodpool by Guido Wenzel | Munich | Germany
· Seehaus im Englischen Garten | Munich | Germany
9 TIMES GUIDO WENZEL ON FOOD & DRINK
WHAT DID YOU LIKE TO EAT AT HOME IN YOUR CHILDHOOD?
Small meatballs with cauliflower, rice and a curry sauce!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE DISH AT HOME IN THE PRESENT TIME?
Gently roasted vegetables with meat or fish, with lots of fresh coriander and a sauce »for drizzling«, made of soy sauce, lime, ginger, spring onions and a little honey!
WHICH EXCEPTIONAL DISH YOU WILL NEVER FORGET AND WHERE DID YOU EAT IT?
I remember a softly sautéed foie gras with Kimchi and a chocolate sauce at the »Indochine 21« in Vienna. That was incredibly good! The restaurant is unfortunately closed, but sometimes I cook this unusual dish at home for friends. However, I do not eat any foie gras today. Alternatively, I use more animal-friendly »not stuffed« goose liver or duck liver.
DO YOU REMEMBER A LQUID THAT YOU HAD IN THE GLASS AND YOU WILL NEVER FORGET?
Krug »Clos de Mesnil« vintage 1959! I was allowed to taste this outstanding wine in the mid-nineties in Munich, and that changed my life instantly and forever. Since then, I love the »firn« character of aged champagne.
YOUR PERFECT CULINARY 10 MINUTES, HOW CAN YOU IMAGINE THIS?
My friends would rate one of my own cooked dishes at home with a star!
WHAT WOULD YOU DO WITH 5€?
In any case I would prepare a damned good pasta dish for 5€!
WHAT ARE YOUR TOP3 HOTSPOTS YOU WOULD LIKE TO VISIT [AGAIN]?
WHICH PERSON WOULD YOU LIKE TO MEET, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY OR ASK?
An Italian mama who takes me to her kitchen and tells me the secrets of her pasta.
IN THE END, TELL US IN ONE SENTENCE SOMETHING FROM YOUR PERSONAL TREASURE OF EXPERIENCE, OR A WISE SAYING YOU WANT TO SHARE WITH US.
Sometimes you’re the dog, sometimes you’re the tree…