The reason for having many nationalities working at Restaurant Andre.I want to work with a wide range of people.
What’s the criteria for selecting staff?
Being young and with passion. I like people who are not wide and shallow, but have unique width and personality. For example, he is great in one part, but has a weak part at the same time.
Isn’t it difficult to lead those unique people?
I consider myself like a football coach. I see suitability of each staff and place them in proper positions.
One of the characteristics of Restaurant Andre is that the staff are from a variety of nationalities.
I choose to do so. There is staff from 14 different nationalities now, but I think it is better to have a variety of ways of thinking.
Is there anything that you do to build teamwork?
It is best to spend as much time as possible together. In my restaurant everyone shows up at the same time, including me. We take the same days off and we do not have early shift or late shifts. By doing so, I think we have unity and teamwork.
Photo by Shih Ji Hung
Coming back from Singapore to Taiwan. What is Chef Andre aiming for?
On October 10th of 2017, which was your 7th anniversary, you announced that you would close Restaurant Andre on February 14th, 2018 and move the base to RAW, which is the restaurant opened in your home country, Taiwan, in 2014.
Yes. I think RAW is the place where we express Taiwan into a restaurant.
We express Taiwanese ingredients according to local availability. And inside the restaurant everyone from the kitchen to the hall and even the dish washing staff is 100% Taiwanese. This restaurant represents the charm of Taiwan including people, is a gift to my home country.
For Chef Andre, what is the new start and target to be?
I want to inspire young chefs from Taiwan, China and all around the world.
Please send a message to young chefs who will lead the cooking profession in the future.
There are times when you feel the way is too tough. But you might feel that because you only see now. When climbing a mountain, difficulties in front of you are just a process as long as you can see the summit. Why don’t you change the way of thinking so that you set a goal and move towards it? I think you can feel everything including difficulties as a process of your own growth.
(Interview: Kyoko Nakayama photographer: Kevin Lee)