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About Relais & Châteaux
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Relais & Châteaux Chef

Thomas Byrne & Gilles Dupont

Relais & Châteaux Chef

Thomas Byrne & Gilles Dupont
Auberge du Lion d’Or
Member Relais & Châteaux from 2006
5, place Pierre-Gautier
CH-1223 Cologny
Switzerland

RESTAURANT

Auberge du Lion d’Or

Menus 180-220 CHF s.i. - 125-153 EUR Carte 132-192 CHF s.i. - 92-134 EUR

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Terminology : t. = tax - s.n.i = services not included - s.i = services included


STORY OF A CHEF

Gilles Dupont: I was born in Annecy in 1956, 40 km from Geneva. My first culinary experience was a work placement to earn a little pocket money. I studied at the hotel management school in Bonneville before completing my studies at Westminster Catering College. Then I had the opportunity to work with Marc Veyrat at L’Eridan, at the London Hilton and at the Queen Elisabeth in Montreal. The first time I worked as a chef was at Le Cygne restaurant at the Geneva Hilton. The restaurant had won two stars by the time I left in 1990. Then I became executive chef at the Hôtel du Rhône for its two restaurants and I won two new stars for one of them, the Neptune. In 1996 I became my own boss at L’Auberge du Lion d’Or in Coligny. This restaurant had left its mark on me: I had been an apprentice chef there in 1974! That’s where I currently practise as a chef and draw on all these experiences as well as a number of internships with great chefs such as Jacques Le Divellec in his restaurant of the same name, Joël Robuchon at Le Jamin and at L’Oasis in Brussels.

Tell us about your star ingredient: Spiny cardoon

It’s a winter vegetable, and we only have it on the menu during that season. In our region cardoons are a must for Christmas dinner, a strong local tradition. Our supplier buys them directly from the farmers. It’s a complicated vegetable, which makes it interesting. It isn’t easy to handle: it pricks the skin and blackens the fingers. The texture is slightly stringy, so it has to be peeled well, like chard. The cardoon is a fine, splendid vegetable, with a flavor rather like artichoke.

What is your Chef’s secret to preparing spiny cardoon?

First we blanch it and drain it well. Then we prepare it either as a gratin with black truffles or as a creamy purée with a dollop of olive oil.

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