As chef-patron of the three-Michelin-starred French riviera restaurant Mirazur, chef Mauro Colagreco is refining Dubai’s Beach Bar and Grill and Celebrities to create an exceptional experience with simplicity and charm. We learn more about the concept and how he’s bringing something new to the table.
What do you consider your greatest achievements?
Obviously, my family including my immediate one – my wife and lovely kids – always comes first, followed by my team, who have accomplished so much over the years.
From a culinary perspective, I believe it’s important to follow the natural rhythms, particularly at Mirazur. We adjust our menu based on the seasonal produce from our garden, adhering to the lunar calendar, as well as the ingredients of our producers. We create a menu based on our fishermen’s catch of the day. Thanks to our garden and various fish and meat maturation processes, we have the time to craft innovative dishes. There is a new creation every day.
One of our biggest achievements in the kitchen is the plastic-free certification we received in 2020. To us, it represents three years of hard work and the commitment of our dedicated team. When we announced the certification, 500 restaurants contacted for more information and advice on how to remove single-use plastic from their kitchens.
How are innovation and creativity integrated into your cooking techniques?
I have always been very curious. Travel and nature are great sources of inspiration: being open minded to others, culture, terroirs and stories. Nature is in perpetual motion, as am I.
In Menton, we have a different teams dedicated to research and development: an ethnobotanist, anthropologist and a kitchen team. They are working on new culinary techniques but also studying nature and history, to understand how people used to work and live in the past and what could be reimplemented in our society.
We also organize a number of trainings, not only technical ones in the kitchen but also in our gardens, to gain better understanding of regenerative agriculture and how the products grow. We also conduct masterclasses with experts from different industries (business, sustainability, art and philosophy).
I am convinced that travel and exposure to difference cultures is a big source of inspiration. I do my best to give my team the opportunity to travel and enjoy immersive experiences in other countries and cultures. For example, Mirazur Beyond Borders is not just a pop-up restaurant; it is first and foremost an immersive experience that encourages the discovery of agriculture, culture and the different communities of a foreign country.
What are the latest culinary trends for 2023?
Chefs and restaurants must consider the environmental predicament we are facing on a global scale. We must reconnect with our own ecosystem and nature, as well as consider the products around us. Depending on the restaurant’s location, sourcing locally can constitute a big challenge, especially if you cannot find certain products. However, there is always a way to reduce the distance.
How are you reimagining French classics with a lighter, modern touch?
At Celebrities, I want to highlight the natural beauty of each product; it is at the heart of my cuisine. The dishes fuse taste and technique, highlighting the main ingredients.