Interview Chef Fabio Bragagnolo Casadelmar, Porto Vecchio France

Find out more about 2 Michelin star Chef Fabio Bragagnolo! Restaurant Casadelmar, Porto-Vecchio

Fabio Bragagnolo                                     Andrew Kirkby

Casadelmar is a luxury 5 star design hotel and includes a 2 Michelin starred gourmet restaurant. Italian born chef Fabio Bragagnolo prepares Mediterranean cuisine that enhances the ingredients by creating subtle, harmonious flavour combinations.

"We are on an Island that belongs to France but is not attached to France and is closer to Italy, so we are privileged to use best of both worlds"

1. Corsica is an island and region of France in the Mediterranean Sea, how is this reflected in your dishes?
“By adapting the Mediterranean culture, surroundings, climate, seasonal products and using local ingredients in my dishes.”

2. You are born in northern Italy, if you need to choose between Italian or French cuisine, which would you choose? Or would it be an Italian pasta with French cheese ;-) ?
“I have no preference; Italian cheeses are maybe not so well known as French cheeses but just as good. I mostly use French techniques in my kitchen, but the diversity of ingredients of both countries. I really like the best of both worlds and you can find that in my cuisine. We are on an Island that belongs to France but is not attached to France and is closer to Italy, so we are privileged to use best of both worlds.”

3. With a lot of fresh fish available every day, what kind of fish gives you the ultimate and favourite taste?
“There is a diversity in fish, we have so many fish available. Each day the fisherman brings me different fish. Difficult to choose, we have prestigious fishes like sea bass and lobster, but also fish like mackerel which are just as good because when the fish is fresh the taste is always phenomenal. We love fresh products and we have some fantastic fishermen that work with us with which we have a great personal bond.”

4. What signature dish brings people to Restaurant Casadelmar?
“There are maybe two type of dishes:”

*Cannelloni of sea bass and spider crab, caviar, freshness of fruit and vegetables

* John dory cooked in olive oil, pink lentils and tomato water foam

Andrew Kirkby; “For me personally there is another dish on the menu, it has in my opinion the potential to become a really top quality dish. It's a dish that is a mixture of quality marinated (raw) fish: ‘Poissons, crustaces et coquillages marines, mostarda de cremona au gingembre, mering’. It is the simplicity and complexity in the dish that make it so special, often when I explain the dish to our customers I like to make the comparison with dishes of other top chefs, for example Paul Bocuse with his ‘Soupe VGE’ (truffle soup): simple, but the taste is amazing.”

5. You are a very likeable chef, are you also friendly during a stressful day? Maybe some “Gordon Ramsey screams” in the kitchen?
“Sometimes Yes and sometimes No”

Andrew Kirkby: “Fabio rarely shouts. We have actually both worked in kitchens like that, with a lot of stress. But it gets you nothing. We have enough pressure as it is but it has to be only positive pressure. Sometimes there is a moment with a little bit of extra tension, but in the end of the day we just shake hands and drink a beer. That's really important. There is definitely a mutual respect, respect is the key word. For me chef Fabio Bragagnolo does not shout very much, in fact I’d like him to shout a bit more.”

6. Which restaurant is on your bucket list?
“There a so many on my list. Some I really would like to visit:”
  • The Fat Duck- London
  • ​A Japanese restaurant in Paris (I forgot the name)

7. The European Soccer Championship 2016 is coming up in France, unfortunately we (The Netherlands) won’t be participating, but you can support 2 countries. Where are you going to follow the Championship?
“To be honest…I am not a big soccer fan. We will have a television screen in the bar so the guests can follow it of course. We will have service, so it will be difficult to follow it as well.”

8. After a hard day's work, how and where do you recharge?
“Back at home with a good shower, or lying across the sofa is where I can relax. I also like to relax on the beach.”

9. During the closing time of Casadelmar (winter time), you travel for new experience and inspiration (for example Primedinners movie première event). What places and/or chef(s) give you inspiration and why?

“Paris is where I come very often, I know the city because I have worked at Le Royal Monceau Raffles. Paris is so dynamic, you can find any type of food, there are always new things to see and explore. Sometime we don't have to travel far to find new inspiration. When I went to Amsterdam to the Primedinners event, I met a lot of new interesting people as well. And the chef who gives me inspiration is Massimo Bottura, whom I have met this winter in Milan.”

10. Primedinners is the new social media for Business, Quality and Gastronomy. What is your honest opinion about our support and passion for international gastronomy?
“I believe it is very good that Primedinners supports the gastronomy in a positive way, for example by not allowing public guest reviews and blogs, but only support positive reflections of the gastronomy."


Casadelmar     *****
Route de Palombaggia
20137 Porto-Vecchio​



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