Before making his mark in Luzern, Johan worked in Ticino, the Italian part of Switzerland. There he sharpened his skills and grew his love for Mediterranean food even more.
This interview was so exciting, not only because I got to meet a talented and renowned chef but also because I got to see him in action in his Kitchen, newly renovated and made available to customers. But to fully grasp how special the location is, one has to really experience it for themselves. My family who accompanied me for dinner was in awe all night long. Surprise after surprise! And one of the most exciting surprises was to watch Johan teach us how to make Risotto from scratch.
Then let’s not even mention the dinner! Food combinations and pairings I had never considered before.
Why did you become a Chef?
Because I’m good! I always loved cooking and it was just a natural process. I wanted to become a Chef as fast as possible!
I started when I was 15.
What is your food philosophy?
Mediterranean cuisine. I want all of our Scala customers to be surprised by the combination of the dishes we serve. I love to see the light in their eyes right after their first bite. The menu doesn’t reveal the end result which contributes also to the awe moment.
How do you get inspired?
From my past experiences at Michelin starred restaurants, books, friends and of course my team mates.
Do you have any icons?
What is your favourite food to eat?
Italian, Mediterranean. I love Pasta and Risotto.
What’s so special about this hotel and the Kitchen club?
It’s a hotel where you can experiment different things. The new kitchen, built last year, lets our customers experience another world which they are not usually previewed to. They get to eat in the kitchen and watch their meal being prepared with fresh ingredients.
What’s your favourite ingredient to cook with?
I like to work with old spices from the old days which have been re-developed with new flavours.
When you don’t work, where do you eat?
At home!! When go out, I generally have a pizza because I love simple foods. But if I have to mention a name, my favourite restaurant in Luzern is Brasserie Bodu.
Any cooking tips?
For our Risotto lovers but also lactose intolerant, the best trick is to substitute the butter for olive oil. That easy!
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