Q&A: Chef Julien Cadiou on his signature dishes and style

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Contemporary French haven Upper Modern Bistro is welcoming Julien Cadiou as its new chef de cuisine. The French gourmet maestro is heavily inspired by Japanese cuisine and has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants in Paris alongside renowned chefs like Alain Ducasse and Kei Kobayashi. We talk to Cadiou about his signature dishes and style…

Hello, chef! So what do you strive to bring to Upper Modern Bistro?

I try to bring all of my energy and motivation to the restaurant every time I step into the kitchen. I was instantly drawn to Upper Modern Bistro when I met director-chef Philippe Orrico for the first time, and I aim to continue to bring new levels of creativity to the menu and maintain the high standard of food that has been the driving spirit of Upper Modern Bistro since day one.

What was the most important experience in your career?

My time at Michelin-starred Japanese establishment Restaurant Kei in Paris alongside Kei Kobayashi was my first significant experience working with Japanese ingredients and techniques. This was when I first began incorporating Japanese flavours into French cuisine. It’s the main inspiration when it comes to my cross-culture menu at Upper Modern Bistro.

Tell us about your signature dishes and the inspiration behind them…

My signature dishes are a combination of everything I’ve seen, done or tasted in the past. I keep the elements I like and add my own ideas. The caramelised octopus with white miso and mixed herbs is one of my favourite signatures. The onsen egg combines Japanese ingredients like edamame beans and miso with very traditional French flavours, such as a piperade emulsion. It’s a light and refreshing dish that incorporates the flavours of Japan with French herbs.

Upper Modern Bistro, 6-14 Upper Station St, Sheung Wan, 2517 0977; upper-bistro.com.

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