For the sheer love his local cuisine, a man would sometimes rise up and give his best in promoting it. He’ll tell his peers why they should love the food that his homeland has prepared. That’s the usual case for the average man. But if we’re talking about Gaston Acurio, it’s a different story. He’ll make you realize why you don’t just love it…why you need it.
That is the nature of this chef, who was chosen to be the ambassador of Peruvian cuisine. That’s pretty much a heady title, as well as duty. But knowing how Acurio does his thing, then it’s definitely not a problem at all. He’s passionate about Peru’s cuisine, and he wants the whole world to appreciate its flavors. You could see that with the number of restaurants that he has established all over the world. From his native country Peru, to the European nation of Spain, his signature is always there.
That’s not a pretty bad achievement for someone who dropped his law degree and pursued the art of cooking. After he stopped studying law, he then proceeded to train himself in cooking by enrolling in a hotel trade school named Sol de Madrid in Spain and then proceeded to Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. This is also where he met his future wife Astrid Gutsche, who was originally from Germany. The two later on started their own restaurant chain called Astrid & Gaston, which became an instant hit with their clients.
A true visionary, Acurio has researched the potentials of Peruvian cuisine and has adapted it to into his restaurants. His rediscovery led him to present these regular dishes in a very modern and attractive manner. And through his restaurants, he is able to bring prestige to his home country. It’s something that I’m sure that he is very proud of.
He is also involved in a TV show, which focuses on the rich culture of the Peruvian landscape. Also, he is a major promoter of Peruvian dishes all over the world, finally succeeding in internationalizing the local dish called ceviche. Lastly, he has written some cookbooks, a compilation recently published by the newspaper El Comercio.
Right now there are Astrid y Gaston locations in Peru, Chile, Colombia, Argentina, Ecuador, Venezuela, Spain and Mexico. I can’t wait for him to open up in NYC.
December 30th, 2010