Mauro Colagreco is celebrating 10 years of his award-winning restaurant Mirazur this year. But as he himself says, he never expected to achieve what he has managed to achieve in the past 10 years. “These 10 years have been amazing and have gone way beyond my expectations,” he told Food and Wine Gazette in an interview at Chefs Revolution in Zwolle last weekend.
He arrived in France with nothing except a telephone and a friend of a friend. He had trained to be a chef in Argentina. In France he went to work in Burgundy to work with Bernard Loiseau at his restaurant in the Côte d’or. He stayed there for one and a half years. After the tragic death of Bernard Loiseau in February 2003, Mauro decided to move to Paris to work at L’Arpege, the legendary restaurant run by Alain Passard. He stayed there for a year and a half and he considers this time as the one which allowed him to develop his own sense of creativity, attention to detail and imagination. Mauro also worked with Alain Ducasse and Guy Martin before taking over the Mirazur restaurant in Menton.
“These are still really great chefs for me and I never imagined that I would reach this level so this is really beautiful,” he said.
I ask him what he wants to achieve in the next ten years. “Projecting myself 10 years from now is impossible and I don’t think that it can get any better. But I wish to be still cooking with the same love and passion,” he tells me.
To celebrate the 10 year anniversary at Mirazur, Mauro has invited 10 friends of his, all top chefs from around the world to cook at his restaurant for one evening. “It is great to be able to share such a moment with chefs who are all friends of mine. We are half way through the programme (in the meantime, Virgilio Martinez from Central Restaurant in Peru cooked there this week after Chef’s Revolution) and it has been great so far. It is a unique opportunity for food lovers to experience chefs interpretation of their cuisine using the produce that I am lucky to have in Menton,” he said.
“Four chefs still have to visit the restaurant. We have Emmanuel Renaut, Sebastien Bras, Jorge Vallejo and finally Massimo Bottura who will close the 10 year activities with a dinner on 27 October,” Mauro said.
Colagreco has been progressively going up the World’s 50 Restaurants list and Mirazur now is in 6th position. The restaurant also has two Michelin stars.
He says he is lucky to be in a location that is on the border between France and Italy. “As an Argentinian chef, I can use the borders without any problems bringing two unique cuisines together. I am also lucky to be able to use vegetables from my own garden for the restaurant,” he says.
What has changed since he opened the restaurant in the food world? Mauro says that today there is more consciousness about sustainability and this is a great thing. “Chefs have today become public figures and it is our responsibility to raise awareness and to leave a better world for our children,” he said.
Mauro Colagreco will be in Brussels for the Gelinaz! Brussels Headquarters event on 10 November. I ask Mauro what he expects from the event. “I love all Gelinaz! events because they are really unique and special. I also love Brussels as a city so it is going to be great fun,” he said.
You can find details about the special events here.
RESTAURANT MIRAZUR | 30, avenue Aristide Briand | 06500 MENTON | Tél : +33 (0)4 92 41 86 86 | Fax : +33 (0)4 92 41 86 87 | Email : firstname.lastname@example.org