Portait – Guillaume KATOLA, new Executive Chef at Rech
Meet the Exceptional New Executive Chef at Rech by Alain Ducasse
"For me, cooking is about sharing"
Guillaume is originally from Santeuil which is a one hour’s drive north of Paris in the historical county of Vexin. He has relocated to Hong Kong following two years as Executive Chef at The Grill at The Dorchester in London. Prior to that he worked for Ducasse Paris for over a decade at a wide variety of Ducasse restaurants in Paris, where he literally worked his way up the culinary ladder starting with the 1-Michelin star Jules Verne Restaurant at the top of the Eiffel Tower, where he worked for seven years.
Guillaume also spent three years as Executive Chef at Salon Première Air France, the restaurant in Air France’s First Class Lounge in Roissy, France operated by Alain Ducasse.
His experience includes Alain Ducasse Ecole de Cuisine in Argenteuil, France and Ducasse’s Benoit, Champeaux, Aux Lyonnais and Ore at Château de Versailles.
“My approach in the kitchen is seasonal, using the freshest products to create dishes that reflect the time of year.”
Reflecting on his decade of experience with Ducasse Paris, he shares,
“My approach in the kitchen is seasonal, using the freshest products to create dishes that reflect the time of year. I’ve learned to always keep the ingredients in as natural a state as possible, bringing out their best flavour without taking away from their raw beauty.
I’m also mindful in the kitchen of the ever-evolving world and working with respect to the environment in everything I do.”
Commenting on his culinary roots and ethos, Guillaume says,
“I was born in the countryside, and my culinary philosophy is built on my first experiences with food there. Our neighbours farmed chickens; we would go fishing on the lake; and I still remember picking beetroots in the field behind my family home and tasting them raw for the first time.
I first learned to cook for my family: I loved creating dishes for them and sharing in their enjoyment of the food I had created. For me, cooking is still about sharing – from the knowledge I have acquired over the years to sharing in your enjoyment of our dishes.”
With regards to his 2019 move to Hong Kong and first posting in Asia, Guillaume adds, “I am so excited to discover this new culinary world, to dive with an open spirit into a new culture and a different way of working. I look forward to integrating new techniques and ingredients into my existing skill set to further refine the cuisine I can offer.”
As the new Executive Chef at Rech by Alain Ducasse, Guillaume is eager to share his culinary passion through Rech’s “Coastal Tour de France”, which begins in March.
The first stop on the Coastal Culinary Tour is Normandy where much of the seafood at Rech is sourced.
The 5-course Normandy set menu available in March and April showcases the best produce and regional dishes from Normandy, prepared “Rech style” – with culinary treasures from Normandy’s wide open fields and orchards with Appellation d’Origine Controlee (AOC)* including carrots from Créances, Calvados and Camembert as well as fresh seafood found off its shores.
ABOUT RECH BY ALAIN DUCASSE
If you love fresh seafood, you’ll adore Rech by Alain Ducasse, the first international outpost of Paris’s most famous seafood restaurant.
An authentically French seafood experience, the 1-Michelin star Rech showcases the best fish, shellfish and oysters from France with Chef Ducasse’s personal interpretation and contemporary cuisine.
Enjoy exceptional seafood cuisine, while taking in InterContinental Hong Kong’s breathtaking views of Victoria Harbour and the Hong Kong Island skyline in the light and airy ambiance, reminiscent of the sea – the inside of a seashell, a piece of floating wood, drifting clouds, the shimmering sunlight on the surface of the water and waves, as interpreted by Marie Deroudilhe, who revamped the Parisian Rech restaurant in 2012.