Food as Art, in conversation with Celebrity Chef Rōze
“I compare a pastrycook who makes good colifichets to a distinguished fashion designer, endowed with perfect taste, who can make charming things with very little material. In the same way, out of almost insignificant scraps of pastry, we have to create pleasing and graceful things that also tempt the appetite.”
Antonin Careme (Marie-Antoine Careme) (1783-1833)
Lingering over the subtleties and ritualising creative practice, food and fashion are married by a certain “art de vivre”. Rather superficially, some may say that it is an unlikely romance but, the flirtation between the two worlds stretches back to the royal courts of King Louis XIV. With social media spilling over with food porn and fashion houses opening their own eateries, personal taste has extended beyond the wardrobe, permeating every aspect of life. From Lagerfield turning his catwalk at the Grand Palais into a workshop to Burberry's month long celebration of their artisan techniques, there is a sense that fashion houses are stripping luxury back to its essence and re-focusing on the artistry of craftsmanship. This dedication to beauty is often extended to a passion for fine cuisine, exemplified by Rick Owen's philosophy of food as art. With an insiders perspective on both industries, it was this shared vision that earned Chef Rōze a place in the personal kitchen of the Californian designer's kitchen.
After graduating from Le Cordon Bleu in 2012, Rōze Traore spent long nights as a line chef in Jean-Georges Vongerichten's New York restaurant, masterfully balancing a schedule of casting calls and catwalks on the other side of the dawn. Signed to Elite London, his refined palette is matched by his presence in front of the camera. Stepping out of the shadow cast by the kitchen hierarchy, Rōze decided to hang up his chef whites and step into the limelight. Concentrating on the uniquely personal experience between the chef and his clientele, Chef Rōze hosts private dining experiences for the likes of Salvatore Ferragamo, Héctor Bellerín Moruno, Diesel and GQ South Africa. Speaking of his approach he says, 'I don't give a fuck, I could be super posh or be getting dirty in the kitchen but I guess the root of it is just relating to people'.
For Rōze, each dish is intimate, standing as an expression of authenticity and a homage to the artistry of gastronomy. Echoing the design world's celebration of the creative process, he claims, 'If I make something for you I want you to know I made it and what it took for me to make it'. Stripped back and fuss-free he describes his style as 'fresh simple and classic', using the simplest ingredients and borrowing technique from the French and Italian schools.
Spending much of his time travelling between New York, London and Paris, he has drawn up a list of his favourite dining spots in each city. Currently in London, he is working with MAP Maison, developing their home-away-from-home vibe and curating a menu that matches their truly global outlook. Unapologetically ambitious and unafraid to go out and get what he wants, Rōze walked into Sketch, one of his favourite London eateries, and spoke to them about collaboration. Set over two floors of an 18th century townhouse in the heart of Mayfair, Pierre Gagnaire and Mourad Mazouz's unique vision is a perfectly curated meeting point between art, music and food. In an exclusive video preview, Rōze talks us through the 2 Michelin star menu and gets hands on in the kitchen.
Chef Rōze's Summer Ceviche Recipe
2 pounds fresh fish (Halibut, Mahi-Mahi, Flounder, Sea Bass)
1/2 pound prawns 51/60
4 cloves of garlic
Olive oil to taste
Red onions, small diced
Salt to taste
2 Habanero peppers
Cilantro to taste
Corno Di Toro Rosso Pepper
Clean fish & prawns properly.
Cut into 1/2-inch dices.
Place fish & prawns in a glass bowl and add chopped garlic, small diced red onion & cucumbers.
De-seed the habanero & corno di toro rosso peppers and add to the bowl.
Squeeze liberal amounts of lime juice over entire mixture and finish with cilantro (chiffonaded), drizzled olive oil, and salt to taste.
Enjoy with bibb lettuce, corn chips, endives or avocado!
Sketch Exclusive Credits
Executive Chef/Celebrity Chef: Pierre Gagnaire
Head Chef: Johanne
Director of Marketing @ Sketch Sylvain Chevelu
Director & Editor: Sebastian Miller
Filmed by: Euan Allardyce
Photography: Giovanni Martins
Chef Roze Management: Elite London