Two Top Chef candidates become ambassadors16/01/2018

Carl Gillain, Chef at L'Agathopède, member of Génération W and Top Chef 2012 candidate has joined our network. Jeremy Vandernoot, his first in command and Top Chef 2018 candidate, is following in his footsteps.

For Carl, Top Chef was the trigger that allowed him to open his first restaurant, L'Agathopède. This is so successful that he has been able to open a second restaurant as well as a Belgian fries concept. He is proud of Wallonia and its products; this fact encouraged him to join Génération W and then become an ambassador of the brand. "Representing Wallonia is important to me and I am delighted to be a partner," he stated.

It is now Jeremy's turn to try his luck in the Top Chef adventure. Although Carl did not push him into entering, he did encourage him and said he is thrilled by the idea. He is even prepared to coach him, saying, "It is my role as a Chef and I am pleased to support him, particularly as we have been friends for more than 20 years now. I hope I can help him go as far as possible".

This 27-year old Mettet resident is passionate about cooking and has worked with the greatest Wallonian chefs. In addition to Carl Gillain, he has had the chance to learn from Sang Hoon Degeimbre, who is also an ambassador of the brand and a leader of the Génération W movement; he also appears by his side in the very first TV advert! He considers this programme as a stepping stone rather than a result in itself, "Here at L'Agathopède, I have been able to work in Carl Gillain's kitchen, but it is not 'my' kitchen. I want to show the public what I am capable of." But although he dreams of opening his own restaurant one day, he is keeping his feet on the ground and staying focused on L'Agathopède, "Dreaming is great, but things are going well here and I do not (yet? Ed.) have any plans for the future."

He also considers the territory of Wallonia is a great resource. "The Wallonia region is full of high quality products that the general public is not always aware of, from Lustin poultry to 'petits gris' snails from Namur". Carl and he are therefore trying to showcase these products through their cuisine, when they cannot do so on French television and RTL. Perhaps while he is waiting to have his own cookery programme?

In the meantime, they both encourage you to follow them on this path and become an ambassador for the brand. "Let's be proud of our region, simply proud of Wallonia and its many resources. It is important to be attached to your roots; I personally would find it very hard to work anywhere else", said Carl Gillain. Jeremy Vandernoot concluded by saying that, "Walloons are not partisan enough, not proud enough of what they have on their own doorstep. Being an ambassador for the brand means promoting Wallonia".

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