He put his utensils aside but kept his cap screwed on his head. This Wednesday night, Ambroise came out of the kitchens of The best chef at the end of the sixth week. After partnering with Sébastien throughout the episode, her comrade has become her adversary. The test of the last chance around Salmon it seemed acquired to him but the cooking of his fish was fatal to him. “You are five weeks up and as soon as you are not inside you leave”, summarizes the candidate with 20 minutes.
Being eliminated cooking your salmon when you’re a chef cooking your own fish is still a shame…
It really is the worst time to go out! It’s a shame and at the same time it’s a great lesson: it teaches you that you should never let your guard down. No matter the test, the slightest mistake can be fatal. When I see that the event revolves around salmon, I tell myself that it will be for me. I’m leaving with a little more confidence. But salmon is not a fish that I like to work with, I don’t like to highlight it too much because most of it is farmed in Norway. I left with perhaps more cards in hand than Sébastien. But in the end, you should never give up.
Did you feel safe during the tasting?
He wasn’t really calm because he knew it wasn’t crazy. What disappointed me was that I knew I could do much better. This contest is treacherous because you only have an hour to test and you don’t have time to mess something up and start over. Seeing as things were a bit wobbly, I was hoping there was something less good up front.
You say that you leave with “a taste of very little”…
The difficult thing about this episode and this last opportunity is that I had the impression of having made a very good start to the competition, where I had a great time cooking the cuisine that resembles me. The taste of very little translates to this side where you’re on top for five weeks and as soon as you’re not on it, you’re gone. At the time of removal, there is really frustration, what.
Did you talk to Paul Pairet at the end of the shoot?
We were able to chat, it was great. He is a really humane leader, who is sensitive to the people in his brigade. He had very nice words. In off, we discussed, he encouraged me and pushed me for the future.
One of the particularities of this episode is the mix of couples. Do you still have something positive in your relationship with Sébastien, despite the defeat?
With Lilian it coincided well, we did a good job. So when you change partners, you have to get back into the mold right away, you have to get to know the other. With Sébastien we get along very well, especially on a human level, but on a culinary level we did not know how to create the link between our two kitchens.
In the first episode, you impressed with the catfish. Was it a desire to put on a show?
The goal was not to put on a show because I have been cooking catfish every day for five years at the restaurant where I work. It is a product with which I am very familiar. I find that there is a message in this fish: it comes from sustainable fishing, it is very abundant in the river, near our house, it combines all the ecological qualities. It made sense to present it, it was like a business card to say that my commitment is sustainable fishing and ecology. I knew it was a bit provocative but it was more to talk about my commitments.
Before the start of the season, the leaders said that the candidates had radical profiles. Do you agree with that?
Yes, it’s not bad. I don’t know if I can characterize myself as a radical cook, but I have very strong convictions in my kitchen and in my daily way of life. The food, the choice of my products, my producers, the impact I have on the environment, are things that are very important to me. This can result in some stringency. It is nice to talk about ecology but we need concrete actions. Inevitably, that makes totally different cooks.
You are already feeling the impact of your participation in The best chef in their life ?
there is life before The best chef and life after The best chef ! What I find great is that it is a great trampoline. Suddenly, we put the focus on our work, we highlight our commitments. After the moment when we passed The best chef, there is a big step. We are in high demand, they recognize us on the street. I’m basically just a cook, I’m not a star (laughs).
What are your projects?
With my partner Romain, we would like to develop our activity around fishing on the Loire: walks, fishing trips, cooking classes. In a few years, we would also like to create guest rooms, create a place around professional fishing on the Loire. I still want to keep in mind that my idea is to develop this concept on a human scale. I don’t want to miss out on the opening of 10,000 restaurants left and right. It is attractive because they are proposals that allow you to see many things but in my opinion you are losing something in your main project. I want people to come to my house to eat, share with them, see them and I don’t want to get lost. My project is so close to my heart that I don’t want to get scattered with concept stores.