2019 ECKART for EXCELLENT CULINARY ART : Franck Giovannini, CH-Crissier
Franck Giovannini is a silent revolutionary. He values tradition and transforms it into one of the most exciting modern kitchens of our time.
Quality, origin, regionality, seasonality of the products and their precise processing are just as important to him as many of his colleagues. What distinguishes Franck Giovannini from other cooks of his generation, however, is his attitude of respect. This applies above all to the people: his guests, his staff in the kitchen and service, as well as his predecessors in the legendary Swiss restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville Frédy Girardet, Philippe Rochat and, last but not least, his tragically deceased friend Benoît Violier.
Driven by this basic attitude, Giovannini creates a young, light and elegant cuisine. Franck Giovannini’s concept of EXCELLENT CULINARY ART is to concentrate on the essence of the products combined with the highest level of craftsmanship. This is his answer to the fashions of the present and for him it is the true challenge of our time. Giovannini and his team not only succeed in modernising nouvelle cuisine, but also in creating a magical overall experience that touches people.
2018 ECKART for ART OF LIVING: Wolfgang Puck, Los Angeles
Wolfgang Puck is still pushing “to offer his guests a better experience”. Influenced by his Austrian homeland, his training as a chef and his eye-opening work in southern France, he emigrated to the USA in 1973. There he experienced his breakthrough in 1982 with the opening of the first gourmet restaurant in Hollywood. The “Spago” became an authority and made his chef famous as a pioneer of modern “fusion cuisine”, now popular worldwide.
The company of the most successful European restaurant operator from Austria now comprises more than 100 restaurants with over 5,000 employees worldwide. For over 20 years he has also been responsible for the now legendary banquet at the Oscars. In addition to his dynamic personality and his culinary brilliance, which focuses on evolution instead of radical changes, his sense for the right balance between tradition and innovation is the basis of his success. He also uses this success for a comprehensive, unparalleled social commitment. He not only supports the American Cancer Society, the Special Olympics, the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the Cystic Fibrosis Society, but his restaurants in Los Angeles also supply food to the non-profit food distribution groups Chef’s to End Hunger, Meals on Wheels and Second Harvest Food Bank.
Wolfgang Puck is a modern ambassador of quality, good taste and helping people to help themselves – his ideas have changed American gastronomy; they shape the ART OF LIVING beyond the present.