Asia’s Lion Chef set for Gourmet Abu Dhabi
A leading name on Asia’s culinary landscape and one of the world’s most awarded chefs – Justin Quek – has signed up for Gourmet Abu Dhabi – the 16-day culinary festival running in the UAE capital from February 8-23.
Chef Quek, the architect and author of Franco-Asian cuisine, will be starring in gourmet promotions at the signature Pan Asian Quest restaurant on Level 63 of the newly-opened, five star Jumeirah at Etihad Towers on Abu Dhabi Corniche from February 19-22,during Gourmet Abu Dhabi. He’ll serve up a chateau dinner at Quest, which has breathtaking 360 degree views of Abu Dhabi Corniche on February 20, which is priced at AED750.Acknowledged as Singapore’s most illustrious culinary export, Chef Justin, whose guest list has included Singaporean stateman Lee Kuan Yew, Microsoft Founder Bill Gates and former Chinese President Jiang Zemin, found his culinary feet as a steward onboard a merchant ship for two years. He then trained in Bangkok and Singapore under demanding Chef Bertrand Langlet who encouraged him to head to France to further his training. Chef Quek took up the challenge risking his US $40,000 life savings in the process – a move, he says, he has never regretted. “I never think of it as a risk,” he says. “I enjoyed my time in France and I must say it was the highlight of my culinary career.”
Returning to Singapore in 1992, he became the chef at the French Embassy in the Lion City serving two high commissioners before opening his first restaurant Les Amis – which won acclaim for its Asianinfused French cuisine. He went on to open restaurants in Taipei, Shanghai and Hong Kong. He has since gone on to win numerous international culinary awards.
Chef Quek’s Gourmet Abu Dhabi 2012 appearance marks his first visit to Abu Dhabi where he says he’s looking forward to “sharing my cuisine and passion for food.” Guests, he says, can look forward to “the unique taste of Franco-Asian cuisine, ingredients driven, clean with subtle taste.”And while he’s in Abu Dhabi for the Gourmet Abu Dhabi, Chef Quek says he’s looking forward to networking with some budding chefs and sharing some words of advice: “this would be to work hard, learn from the best and to be a good chef, one must eat in good restaurants and understand good flavours.”