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Le Cordon Bleu at Rio de Janeiro's
Carnival 2019

How does it feel for Le Cordon Bleu to be at the biggest Carnival celebration in Brazil and the most important in Rio?

Carnival is one of the biggest events in the world, I would say. Hence, it is a very important moment to focus on creativity. For us, Le Cordon Bleu, the event was an opportunity to be close to a broader universe of people, to spread our mission, let them to get to know us better and to experience Le Cordon Bleu Rio de Janeiro in a unique way. For this, we planned a very special surprise for the guests at Quem | O Globo Booth. But the truth is the  Carnival goes beyond this booth, it is also an important moment for the brand here in Brazil. It is the city’s party! We were very excited to provide to cariocas this special moment.

The school’s surprise at the booth was a live show on how to make dark-beer ice-cream. Does this recipe represent the tradition of Le Cordon Bleu for combining different flavors of gastronomy with an exquisite technique?

Yes, we are Glocal. We are in 20 countries and we have 30 Institutes around the world. At Le Cordon Bleu, you don’t learn recipes, you learn techniques. We see a recipe as a vehicle to spread knowledge. Once you learn the technique you understand how to take the best out of a specific ingredient. The black-beer ice-cream designed for this Carnival was a creation of our Chefs from Le Cordon Bleu Rio de Janeiro. The inspiration came from the city, from the carioca identity.

The event was an opportunity to be close to a broader universe of people, to spread our mission, let them to get to know us better and to experience Le Cordon Bleu Rio de Janeiro in a unique way.
Sofia Mesquita Rio de Janeiro Directos - photo by Carlos Lázaro
How does the school combine the tradition of French gastronomy with the Brazilian one?

The world is going through a decisive moment, in music and fashion… etc and cooking is becoming a combination of ingredients and techniques from every part of the world! Each day new ingredients are found, and the technique goes along and keeps evolving. It is an opportunity to learn. Ethnic Culinary is the past. We are all simply cooking. A Brazilian couple doesn’t cook “Brazilian Food”. They cook. They are no longer restricted to chopped meet or to roasted dry meet, they make ceviche or any other dish in their own way.
The local food is transformed into a dish according to the cultural intimacy, defined by the nature of local ingredients and then replicated in different cultures in a thousand unique ways. However, there are longtime traditions that travel easily from Paris to New York, from Peru to Rio de Janeiro that persist as the original. We are committed to learn, hoping to find new inspiration to bring home based on a new repertoire. We can stick to the original, if it makes sense – like the traditional Beef Wellington, for example – or we can incorporate a new flavor brought by the Thai cuisine and combine it with local traditions. A quick Asian noodle dish – with soy sauce, sesame oil and chives – twisted by adding pesto and buffalo-milk mozzarella inherits a flavor of the traditional Italian pasta and brings a new version of these two identities. At Le Cordon Bleu we pursue new inspirations and a comprehension of the local culture, bringing it together with a technique that characterizes French cuisine.

What is the Social Impact of the Institute has in Rio?

We have many different projects in our horizon that soon will be brought to life. Today, we have a partnership with the State – Faetec that consists on a scholarship program to support our students.

Why does the Institute focus on such projects and what is the purpose of Le Cordon Bleu with an initiative as the latter?

We want to contribute and give back. It is our responsibility as citizens. All of us, individually and as a group, should have a special project of such nature.

What defines Le Cordon Bleu as an Institute, making it so respected and admired around the world?

Our values and mission are clearly defined and understood. It starts with planting the seed of our values in every member of the team, and then let it flourish. You will find a synchronized organization sharing the same base values and growing over the same pillars that characterize our way of spreading our message. We are a family organization that already lives for 125 years without losing the aim on tradition, innovation, excellence and, of course, the passion for the “métier”.

Our Chefs João Paulo and Philippe Brye