Brasserie Floís New Kitchen Master Ė Chef Vincent Tirado
Prior to joining Brasserie Flo Tianjin, Chef Vincent Tirado worked for a private airline catering service in Geneva, Switzerland, preparing special dishes for famous people like Cristiano Ronaldo, Diego Maradona, Michael Schumacher, Shakira and other VIPs such as high-profiled government officials and presidents. The experience was one of the greatest risks he took in his career as he found himself studying special ingredients, experimenting with recipes, managing the kitchen and basically pushing himself beyond his limits to ensure that the dishes retained their freshness while on the plane; whilst at the same time remaining deliciously over-the-top.
Now, Chef Vincent brings his passion and experience in cooking to Floís kitchen with delectable French dishes. Hereís more of Floís kitchen master as he shares with Tianjin Plus a little about himself.
Tell us how you first became interested in cooking?
My grandmother was a great cook and my uncle owns a restaurant so from a very young age I was already in the kitchen- helping out and eating. I wasnít a good student at first. However, when I was 15, I quit regular school and enrolled in a culinary school. Cooking runs in the family and fortunately, it is also something that I love to do.
Whatís your latest culinary offering?
We have something called Sizzling Pig (made from suckling pig). Itís from an old French recipe. Itís boneless so itís convenient to eat and good for people, especially women, who donít like fatty foods. And itís definitely tasty!
Youíve been cooking since 1996. Please can you share with us the greatest lessons youíve learned so farÖ
Well, the first lesson is that cooking is an art. Every art needs passion. It also means you cannot become a good cook in just one day or one year. It takes many years. Also, you have to love the people youíre cooking for. You have to love people and cook with love. Basically, my job is to make people happy through my cooking. So, if you donít love people and you donít cook with love and just cook for money, for me, it defeats the purpose of cooking.
What has been your greatest challenge being a chef?
When I was younger, I always had to prove to people that I was the best before finally becoming a chef. So I gave not only 100% of myself, but 200%, to prove that Iím capable. So the biggest challenge was to create my own place without pushing others in the process. And now, my biggest challenge here is to manage the people without shouting, show them respect and make them do what I want without forcing them.
How about the greatest risk you took in your career?
Before Flo, I worked as a chef for private flights in an international airport in Geneva, Switzerland. When you work for a private flight, it is totally different than when you cook in a restaurant because the food is taken on the plane and so you have to place the food in some special box to preserve it. At first it was very frustrating to not get the results that I wanted but then I realize the challenge of preparing food and choosing the right recipes. So, it was a big risk for me because I didnít know if it was going to give me better skills or not. But in the end, that risk was a really good experience.
Now, do you have any favourite Chinese food?
My favourite is Baozi and yes, I know how to make them. I also like Yuan Xiao (sticky rice with peanut filling).
Lastly, what are your impressions of Tianjin?
I like Tianjin because itís a cozy city- even with a big population of 12 million. In some parts of Tianjin I feel like Iím in Europe, especially here in the Italian Style Town. The parks around with green areas are lovely.