Did Thibaut participate? top chef or at an attraction in Parc Asterix? His career in the M6 competition turned into a real rollercoaster over the weeks, he first packing his bags, returning to the competition and then being eliminated again. In the eleventh episode, the green-starred chef failed to convince the judges with his mackerel. “Cooking in my restaurants doesn’t take an hour to get there, it’s not quite my style. At this level I was weaker than the others,” he explains to 20 minutes†
What was your reaction when the production asked you to come back to the competition?
It was a few days after my elimination, so I was psychologically preparing to return to my professional life and my family life. The production called me to tell me that I had been chosen by the chefs to participate in the return of the eliminated. It’s extremely moving because there were seven outgoing candidates ahead of me. I wanted to honor this opportunity by entering the competition.
You re-enter the game as a lone candidate. Does this status change anything compared to working in a brigade?
I don’t know if that makes a big difference. I am actually alone, but the cooks come to me, there are still little tips, we are not the ugly duckling. Finally, we are not alone, there is support between the candidates, it was not as difficult as it seems.
How did you feel during the last chance tasting?
I basically wasted my last three chances… I think I have a kitchen that needs your time. I don’t cook in my restaurants in an hour on the road, it’s not quite my style. At this level I was weaker than the others. The taste was good, but again I left too much in. I wanted to put one fish per person on the plate, so I gutted six fish while Lilian did one bite per person, it saves a lot of time. In the allotted time, there are the ten minutes we spend in the pantry and the ten minutes getting dressed. There are still forty minutes left. I didn’t feel like taking a bite when Lilian had it.
You were not allowed to participate in the black box, is that a pity?
No, it’s not a regret, because I could do it with friends blindfolded. I was even honored to inaugurate Philippe Etchebest’s restaurant, we were the first people in the world to set foot there. It was still under construction, we ate an incredible dish. In addition, we were in Bordeaux for a day and it was great. The black box is a mythical test of the show, but compared to what we experienced in Bordeaux, I am very happy.
Hélène Darroze underlines your “exceptional personality with a lot of generosity and a lot of technique. “It’s not nothing!
Whether it’s from his mouth or that of a passerby, it’s always moving. I’m glad he liked my cooking. His words stimulate me and comfort me in my own ideas. I have the kitchen I have, I’m glad it can appeal to people.
She also tells you that you need to “understand one little trick to be at the top”. Did you understand what it was about?
This is a topic I was working on before joining top chef† I wanted to bring flavors together and centralize elements. We try to simplify the dishes that I take away from the restaurant, I try to review many things. I’m open to comment and my cuisine has always evolved day by day. top chef was a step in my development, it answered questions I asked myself. But the most important thing for me is listening to my customers.
At the end of your speech, say that: top chef is like a “bubble of happiness”…
You really have to feel it to understand it. Every day I start my day at 8 am and finish at 2 or 3 am. I work a lot, I love what I do, I am passionate. But there we take a break and find ourselves with fourteen new friends who are passionate about the same things. We live together, we cook together. It’s something where everything is beautiful, everything is great. There are also difficult and emotionally difficult moments, but it is so strong that it is a small bubble of happiness. It is a moment of pause in life.
Was it a push to be the only green star candidate?
The green star rewards ethical obligations. My cooking is what it is, my obligations are very strong. When I talk about it on the show, I get a very important message. I was lucky enough to have the Green Star the year it was made, so it’s a real honor. It’s not pressure, but something I wear with pride. It’s important that restorers remain aware of the ability we have to change things. I was delighted to be able to talk about ecology on television, to emphasize my commitments. I could talk about this with the green star in top chef†
What are your projects?
Anona opened in 2019. Then, when leaving top chef, I opened Starving Club, a 100% homemade street football restaurant using local seasonal produce. I applied my green star pledges to a more accessible restaurant. It was an ongoing project during filming that I worked on in the evenings after the tests. And this summer I will be signing the Fabula menu, the temporary restaurant of the Carnavalet museum. It is a nocturnal terrace open from May 6 to October.