Our next Chef of the Week is a man of many talents. Not only is he a whiz in the kitchen, but he’s a passionate photographer as well.
Allow us to introduce you to Malcolm Campbell of Auberge du Pommier.
At the ripe age of 17, Newmarket native Malcolm Campbell moved to Vancouver to train with French Chef Frederic Couton and work towards his Red Seal. Following his passion to Europe, he acquired a wealth of knowlege and invaluable training at establishments like The Ritz London, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, Auberge de l’Île Barbe, and the Bingham Hotel, the latter of which he helped to earn the restaurant’s first Michelin Star.
With years of experience under his belt, Chef Malcolm now finds himself as the Chef de Cuisine at Auberge du Pommier. We had the opportunity to chat with him about what he thinks the biggest misconception in the industry is, his (surprising) go-to meal at home, and the three letter word that’s gotta go from all kitchens.
How did you get your start in the industry?
When I was young, I had to get a part-time job, so I started off just working weekends in restaurants for some pocket money. Over time, I fell in love with the fast-paced, exciting, crazy environment, and discovered my culinary calling.
How would you describe your culinary style?
Modern European – largely influenced by my experience working overseas.
What’s your favourite dish on your current menu and why?
I really like our Rhubarb & Foie Gras. It has a wonderful range of flavours and textures – a mariage de saveurs [marriage of flavours]!
I am also a chocolate lover (who isn’t?), so our Bombe au Chocolat dish is quite special to me as well.
What do you think is the biggest misconception about the restaurant industry?
I think that the general public does not always fully understand or appreciate how much time and effort goes into cooking. Each dish is so carefully thought out, and so much heart and soul goes in to each and every plate.
What’s your go-to meal to cook at home?
Honestly, if I have to cook for myself it would just be granola cereal with a banana. Luckily, my wife takes good care of me so she has a dinner waiting for me at the end of the day. I love her Czech meatloaf!
What are three restaurants our readers need to try before they die?
- Fäviken (Sweden)
- Michel Bras (Laguiole, France)
- The French Laundry (California)
What’s one tip our readers should know to up their own game in their kitchens?
Planning, organization, and practice.
If there was one thing in the restaurant industry you could change, what would it be?
How do you think Toronto (and/or Canada’s) culinary scene will evolve in the future?
I was away from Canada for about 8 years while I was cooking in Europe. When I returned a couple years ago, I was pleasantly surprised at the level at which the culinary scene has grown. I think it will keep growing, getting stronger and will hold its own weight with the rest of the world.
Are there any other chefs you’d like to see profiled? Let us know in the comment section or tweet us at @ViewtheVibe.