IN THE KITCHEN WITH CHEF NICOLAS VIENNE 0 907

“Moving to Mauritius was a decision first led by the island’s reputation for fascinating cuisine, but when I discovered the passion and warmth of the people, I knew there could be no better place for me.”

Four Seasons Tenure: Since 2015

First Four Seasons Assignment: Executive Chef, Four Seasons Resort Mauritius at Anahita

Employment History:

Sofitel Guangzhou Sunrich, China; Sofitel So Bangkok, Thailand; Sofitel Shanghai Hyland, China Sofitel Bora Bora, French Polynesia Coral Palms Island Resort, New Caledonia; Fine Ca- tering and Event Company, Florida, USA; Café Moderne, Paris, France; Bal- thus Restaurant, Beirut, Lebanon; Sur Un arbre perche, Paris, France; Bistro Humbert, Boston, USA

Birthplace: Paris, France

Languages Spoken: French, English and Spanish

With a career that incorporates more than 14 years professional cooking and kitchen management experience across three continents, it is perhaps no wonder that keen traveller Chef Nicolas Vienne has found his home in the beautiful surroundings of the In- dian Ocean, on an island famous for its rich cultural diversity and welcoming nature. His role of Executive Chef at Four Seasons Resort Mauritius at Anahita now extends his experience across a new, fourth continent.

Beginning in his native Paris, Chef Nicolas developed his skills under the guidance of multiple Michelin Star chefs, including Alain Ducasse and Eric Briffard at Four Seasons Hotel GeorgeV. His first international opportunitycame in 2001 when he accepted the position of executive chef for Bistro Humbert in Boston, USA – a stepping stone towards his global journey. Following Boston, Chef Nicolas held various international positions as executive chef, including locations such as the bustling city of Beirut in Lebanon, the sunshine state of Florida, USA and the paradise South Pacific islands ofNew Caledonia and Bora Bora. During a return to Paris in 2004, Chef Vienne was awarded a Michelin Star while head chef of Café Moderne.

Joining Sofitel in 2007 while in BoraBora, Chef Nicolas embraced the company’s expansion into Asia, first taking on the executive chef role in Shanghai, before becoming part of the pre-opening team of Bangkok as culinary designer and then into his most recent role as area executive chef in Guangzhou in January 2013, where he oversaw five of the region’s hotels, leading a combined team of more than 600 chefs and 20 restaurants.

A multiple award-winner, Chef Nicolas is fluent in French, English and Spanish and is the proud author of three published cookery books. Chef Nicolas is married to his wife, Donia, and is the proud father to Meryl.

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5 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT ORGANIC FOOD PRODUCTS 0 387

A key aspect of maintaining a healthy lifestyle is being mindful of what you eat. That said, choosing organic food products can go a long way towards giving your body the essential vitamins that it needs to stay in top shape. Indeed, organic food products have become popular over the recent years due to the perception that they’re generally safer to consume for most customers. Specifically, organic produce is said to contain no harmful chemicals or pesticides, while organic meat is advertised as containing no synthetic growth hormones. 

If you want to start incorporating more organic food into your diet, you should learn more about how they can keep you healthy. To help you understand more about organic food products, here are some interesting things you need to know:

  1. Organic food products are not made equal. If you plan to shop everything organic, it pays to know that there are three types of organic food products. If the product label says it’s “completely organic,” it means that it is 100% truly organic and guaranteed to be chemical-free. However, if the product label only says it’s “organic,” the food may only be 90-95% organic since some conventional methods may have been applied during the growing and processing of the product. And lastly, some product labels will simply indicate “contains organic ingredients.” This means that there were some non-organic ingredients used in the manufacturing of the product.
  2. They’re generally healthier, but not all the time. Organically-produced fruits and vegetables contain higher amounts of vitamins, minerals, as well as antioxidants. Meanwhile, organically-raised animals have leaner meat, which is better for our cardiovascular health. However, it’s best to note that some non-organic food products may be more nutritious than organic ones—especially if they’ve been fortified. Fortified foods are those that have been imbued with nutrients that can’t be found in their organic counterparts. For example, fortified milk products are more nutritious than organically-produced milk since they contain higher levels of vitamin D.
  3. Organic farming helps save the environment. Organic farming is considered to be more environment-friendly than conventional farming. This is because it helps reduce air, water, and soil contamination due to the lack of chemicals and pesticides used. By staying chemical-free, organic food production also helps maintain biodiversity and preserve the local wildlife. Furthermore, it helps prevent global warming since most organic food products are only sold locally. This is because the reduced need for long-distance transportation translates to lower carbon dioxide emissions.
  4. Organic food products taste better and fresher. Some people are put off by the belief that organic food products have a blander taste. But since they are made without any chemicals and preservatives, they can actually taste better and fresher. Also, the organic way of producing fruits, vegetables, and crops allows them to contain higher levels of antioxidants, which are believed to help maintain the natural taste of these products. 
  5. Know the dirty dozen and clean fifteen. If you can’t afford to always buy organic food products, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) has released a shopper’s guide known as the “dirty dozen and clean fifteen.” In the dirty dozen list, it contains the list of fruits and vegetables that you need to buy organically since non-organic ones increase your risk of consuming too much chemicals and pesticides. Among the produce that made it to the dirty dozen list are strawberries, spinach, kale, nectarines, apples, grapes, peaches, cherries, pears, tomatoes, celery, and potatoes. Meanwhile, the clean fifteen list refers to the list of fruits and vegetables that are safe to buy non-organically. This includes avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, frozen sweet peas, onions, papayas, eggplants, asparagus, kiwis, cabbages, cauliflower, cantaloupes, broccoli, mushrooms, and honeydew melons. If you afford to go purely organic, then these are the types of produce that you can consume while still making sure that you’re maintaining a healthier diet.

While organic food products are better for your health, they can be quite expensive since their production requires greater labour input. Without the help of chemicals, produce such as fruits, vegetables, crops, as well as the animals themselves grow more naturally and slowly. This can make them more difficult to grow or raise in general. As a result, organic food products usually cost 30-40% more than non-organic food. So if you want to eat organically, be smart with your shopping choices to keep costs down. One way to help make this happen is to always buy organic produce when they are in season.

CATERING.MU BY CHEF FABIO 0 337

In our last edition, we had the pleasure to feature and interview Chef Fabio from La Table Du Chateaux. We were invited to taste his delicious menu such as the 7 Hours Lamb Roast and his exquisite outside kitchen which is cooked on the traditional “Feu De Bois”. Another of his latest achievements Catering.mu was launched earlier this year, he now offers to the general public his outside catering services and you can have them be the “Co-Creators of your Special Event”.  Specialising in Weddings, Corporate Functions, cocktail receptions, seated dinners and many menu options to fit your needs and budget, using only quality, fresh and seasonal ingredients. Catering.mu provides the very best in food services. Their staff, working with us for more than 8 years at La Table du Château, is skilled in development and presentation of food and can cater for all different tastes and special diets. We create menus that add ease and elegance to your day. Catering.mu is ready to make your day memorable with our dedicated Event & Banqueting Manager Doushina, who will look after all your event needs. To treat your guests to five-star impeccable service and top notch food during your next event.  Ask for your quotation visit Catering.mu.