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I was born in Cancale in Brittany, of a seamstress mother and a fisherman father. My grandparents worked the land and sold fish. At the age of 14, I worked at La Métairie de Beauregard in St Malo, with Jacques Gonthier, who had trained in Paris in great restaurants such as Lasserre, Ledoyen and Laurent. He was a wonderful teacher and almost a second father to me. Thanks to him, I developed a good head for cooking and in the 1980s I was able to complete a very successful “Tour de France” to learn about casseroles. I arrived in Quebec in 1986 and became Sous Chef at the Hilton under the guidance of Jean Soulard. There I met Rolande Leclerc, at that time maître d’hôtel at Le Croquembouche. In 1990, we opened our restaurant L’Initiale together, and that allowed me to define my own culinary identity. My cuisine there is a bit like me. Hospitality, generosity, dishes created with love are the words that just about sum it up.
It changes with the seasons — one week with carrots, another with wild mushrooms… In fact, I think about the vegetable before the meat. And I always put in onions! For example, it can be roasted and served on an onion purée. I use every part of the piglet: the ham, head, tongue and even the rind.
Piglet used to be seen as something of a lowend product, but now the breeders have refined it, working in cooperation with the chefs. As a result of this dialogue, we can offer a product that’s not too fatty, not too small and very flavorful.