Thursday, August 23, 2012

ATC Interview with Thierry Rautureau - continued

ATC:  This is Laura Kluvo from All Top Chef and I'm on the phone with Master Chef Thierry Rautureau.  Hi Theirry!

TR:  Hello Laura, How are you doing?

ATC:  Fine, thank you.  Congratulations on making the cast of Top Chef Masters.

TR:  Thank you very much.

ATC:  What was the best thing about being on the show?

TF:  The best thing about being on the show was forging a strong friendship with the other contestants and also having the lifetime pleasure of cooking over The Grand Canyon.

ATC:  So, was that you favorite challenge?

TR:  That was my favorite location.  I don't know if it was my favorite challenge, even though I won.  I wasn't very comfortable with the banana yucca.  I tell you it was a little bit of a head spin when I tried to figure out what to do with it.  The wonderful thing about the show was cooking on top of the world.  It was very humbling.  I thought it was absolutely magical.  It was the opportunity of a lifetime.

ATC:  I have a question about the Quickfires:  When all of the plates are set on on the table and the judges go down the line and taste them all, doesn't the last plate have a disadvantage?

TR:  Well, I think it depends on who is judging.  When you are the last one you have a disadvantage because things get cold. things fall apart or don't look as good as they used to.  There is quite a time differential between the first plate and the last plate, so yes, there could be a disadvantage.

But on the other hand, the palate may be satiated after tasting eight or ten plates and you may be granted a little bit of leeway on strength of seasoning.  Also, the last plate leaves the strongest impression.  So being last could also be seen as an advantage.

ATC:  Also, in the elimination challenge, how much time passed between plating and serving your dish?

TR:  Enough time for the Béchamel to separate.

ATC:  How hot was the temperature at the pool party?

TR:  It was pretty warm.  It was warm enough so that if you were doing a raw dish, you would definitely take a chance that the heat would warm up the dish.

But then a hot dish would cool as the trays were passed.

I made a rookie mistake.

ATC:  If you could go back, is there anything that you would do differently?

TR:  I would definitely do the Bloody Mary and the fruit skewer, but I would probably do a different sandwich and probably not the Béchamel.  I would probably still do something classic, but a different dish.

ATC:  Tell us about your restaurants.

TR:  I have two.  I've got Rover's, which is a fine dining establishment, a small house converted into a restaurant.  We have been open for 25 years.  It is very much focused on each diner.  And then next door we have a French-American Bistro called Luc, named for my father who passed away several years ago.  We serve crepes, classic and contemporary French and American dishes, hamburgers, things like this.

ATC:  What is the most popular dish at Rover's?

TR:  The most popular dish at Rover's is probably the scrambled egg and caviar which we have been doing for 25 years.  We take the egg out of the shell, prepare it, put it back in the shell, and top it with lime creme fraiche and white sturgeon caviar.

I would say the most frequently ordered dish is the foie gras.  We are known for this.

ATC:  Tell us about your charity.

TR:  My charity is Food Lifeline, which is an organization that gathers food, repackages it and distributes it to local food banks.

So, if you are a small food bank and you are looking for something like 50 pounds of apples packaged into single-serving containers, you can contact Food Lifeline and they will be able to provide this to you.

Of every dollar donated to this cause, 93 cents goes to food and only 7 cents goes towards operating expenses.

So it is a very efficient and well-run organization.

ATC:  Thierry, we're almost out of time, is there anything else you would like to say to your fans?

TR:  I would like to say to my fans, "Thank you very much for your tweets and Facebook messages, and all that you have been giving me.  It is very warming and don't give up because I am sure that Bravo will be asking me back again for another round."

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