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Meet Academic Director
Chef Loic Malfait

Academic Director Loic Malfait - le cordon bleu london

Chef Loïc joined Le Cordon Bleu London in 2006, bringing with him many years of experience working for a number of London’s premier establishments. In 2009, he was promoted to Academic Director, gaining responsibility for the institute’s academic courses and the operations of all Teaching Chefs. Chef Loïc is very much the public face of the institute having presented the London campus video and demonstrated his skills for the likes of The Guardian, The Sun and RyanAir magazine.

What made you want to become a chef and when did you realise?
My parents owned a restaurant, so I was basically born into the industry. I was also part of a choir and loved singing at a young age - but my love for food prevailed.

What are you most passionate about in the food world?
I enjoy following our eating habits, but what I most enjoy about food is that it brings people together. I also am a strong believer in organic food.

Why did you choose Le Cordon Bleu and what makes it so unique to you?
I once had a Le Cordon Bleu cookery book which I learnt to cook from, so it’s always been a part of my life - but what I think makes it so unique is the programmes it offers, and more importantly the students aren’t a number they are part of the Le Cordon Bleu family all over the world. It’s beautiful.

One tip for an aspiring chef
If you like what you do, you’ll do it well. It doesn’t matter what the job is, but if you enjoy it, whatever you touch will turn to magic. If you don’t like it... well there’s no point in doing it.

What do you like about the food scene in London today?
It’s extremely cosmopolitan; there are so many restaurants to choose from today. You can have whichever cuisine you like because it’s open to the world. I love London.

What is your favourite ingredient and what do you enjoy cooking the most?
It would have to be charcuterie. I really enjoy smoking and curing at home, which I think this has stemmed from spending time with my Godmother when I was young. She worked in one and I loved making sausages with her.

It doesn’t matter what the job is, but if you enjoy it, whatever you touch will turn to magic.

What is the best way to train your palate to be able to distinguish and match flavours?
It’s all down to an early education. Your palate has a memory, so if you start trying and tasting flavours at an early age you’ll start to be able to relate flavours to a memory.

How do you deal with the anticipation of competing?
It’s all down to training and practise, but the key is to create something you know. Don’t try anything new during a competition, do what you know you can do well and have faith in.

As well as being in the judging panel of our UK Scholarship Award, you’ve judged at the Polish Culinary Cup final and the Trendy Chef competition, so how would you describe your judging style?
I would say I’m strict, but I’m also understandable. I like to watch for a while to understand what’s really going on and establish their technical abilities. Organisation is something I look for, but flavours are also really important for me to see - but these depend on the country you’re in, so I’m flexible to a point.

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