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aprons that connect the world

DESIGNED BY CULINARY CHEFS JO GROOTAERS | JAN MENTEN | DIMITRY LYSENS


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APRONS THAT CONNECT THE WORLD From Jakarta to New York and from Reykjavik to Cape Town. Eating and drinking is a common interest across all continents, cultures, peoples, religions and languages. Every person on this planet interacts with the hospitality industry at some point. That includes you and me. During every visit to a catering business expectations are high, and not just in terms of culinary experience, but too often the importance of the appearance of floor staff is forgotten. This is where Pavelinni wants to create extra added value. With tailor-made catering aprons that match the image of the catering business and the style of the kitchen. With our aprons we want to expand the creative world of the chef into the presentation of the floor staff: aprons that connect the world. That is why I would like to take you on a world tour with Pavelinni. And what better place to start this journey than Tongeren? The home of Pavelinni is not only the oldest city in Belgium, but with three star restaurants, it’s also the culinary cradle of the BeNeLux . I am therefore very proud that our three star chefs from Tongeren - Jo Grootaers, Jan Menten and Dimitry Lysens - have been cast in our apron story. The three chefs each chose their favourite apron, which they personalized according to their own taste, so that it matches the style of their kitchen and the image of their restaurant. The result is something to be proud of. Our expertise with respect to production, combined with their practical catering experience, has resulted in three modern apron lines. The name of each apron line is linked to one culinary city that each star chef cares deeply about. As our world tour departs from Tongeren, we immediately make three stopovers in Barcelona (Jo), San Sebastian (Jan) and Copenhagen (Dimitry). We invite you to travel around the world with us. Dominik Katza CEO Pavelinni


aprons that connect the world

Altermezzo Jo Grootaers

4 De Mijlpaal Jan Menten

8 Magis

Dimitry Lysens

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aprons that connect the world

Jo Grootaers of Altermezzo Tongeren in the footsteps of Sergio Herman

STAR CHEF AT 26 Best Young Michelin Chef, Best Young Chef by Gault & Millau, among the five best young chefs in Europe and ... the first star. The record of achievements of prodigy Jo Grootaers, from star restaurant Altermezzo in Tongeren, looks impressive. And to think just nine years ago he was baking pancakes there.

Recognition

together. After a while we learned how to interact with each other at work and it hasn’t been a problem since. We’re also living together now.

The period between November 2017 and 2018 represented a real leap. “It was very busy and the year flew by,” says the affable chef. “Of course it was very nice. Before my individual prizes and the Michelin star I was already doing television work, but afterwards I got requests from everyone and everywhere. The recognition of other chefs, who I used to look up to, is the most important thing for me. Now, they know who I am. We went to celebrate getting our star with Peter Goossens at the Hof van Cleve. He congratulated me personally. A real honor. If I run into him now, he knows who I am and knows the restaurant. Before he would have though: ‘Who is that?’”

No-nonsense The way Jo handles the attention and his people also applies to his kitchen. “My cooking style is very no-nonsense. What you see is what you get. No hidden techniques. Everything is pure. In the kitchen we do not concern ourselves with matters that we should not concern ourselves with. I think that’s important.” The kitchen is his territory, but the chef is also interested and involved in all the other aspects of working in a star restaurant. Like the way the floor staff is dressed. “A beautiful apron contributes to the look of the business. If I have to meet guests at their table, I also want to look decent. That is part of the gourmet experience. It has to look right from every angle. People have to be like: ‘My goodness, they all look so elegant.’ They have to be able to see that we have an eye for every detail. I am very satisfied with the end result of my apron. Very beautiful, sleek and modern. It is not a traditional floor apron and it fits perfectly with the interior of Altermezzo. “

Girlfriend Lana Photo shoots, interviews, face of products, television work, ... All this while still managing the kitchen of a star business. The question arises whether there is still time to cook. “Too little”, Jo admits. “My resolution is to slow down and focus mainly on the restaurant. I’m still going to do the right things, but I’m going to make clear to myself what’s good for me.” Fortunately, he found his great love Lana in his own kitchen. “Love for cooking and love in the kitchen. Isn’t that wonderful? In the beginning it was harder to work 5


aprons that connect the world

Barcelona Jo’s apron line is named after the Spanish city of Barcelona. “Barcelona is a place where I feel at ease. It’s where I find my true self culinarily speaking. In recent years I have been there several times. Its cuisine offers so many possibilities that have a connection with the sea. Not only at a gourmet level, but also in the smaller businesses. That appeals to me”, the young Grootaers concludes.

ABOUT ALTERMEZZO After the bistro Intermezzo on the Tongerse Grote Markt, with Altermezzo Jean-Pierre Jaeken and Gerda Wauters opened a second catering business on the outer ring of the country’s first city. It went from bistro to top restaurant and received its first Michelin star in 2017. No less than 16 out of 20 in the Gault & Millau. More info: www.altermezzo.be.

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aprons that connect the world

Barcelona Chocolat (CHOM02)

Blue

(BLUM02)

Black

(BLKM08)

35% cotton, 65% polyester Wash at 60°

Long waist apron; BAT Dimensions: 80 x 80 cm

Apron; BAAPR Dimensions: 100 x 70 cm

“Barcelona is a place

where I feel at ease. It’s where I find my true self culinarily speaking.”

Short waist apron; BAM Dimensions: 40 x 65 cm


aprons that connect the world

Tongeren star chef Jan Menten was supposed to be a baker

MASTERFUL MILESTONE Father Menten was mildly disappointed when his dear son Jan did not want to take over one of his two bakeries. That disenchantment has long since made way for unabashed pride. With restaurant De Mijlpaal (The Milestone) in Tongeren, chef Jan Menten is now a fixture in the star world.

star restaurant, when I was 19. I lasted for eight months. It was too much. Later in my career I worked at Comme Chez Soi for two years, and more recently at Bernard Oiseaux in Solieux in the Bourgogne region for one year. A three-star restaurant at a high level catering to more than 120 people a day.”

“My parents owned two bakeries in Tongeren. My dad had it figured out: his two sons would each take over one bakery. He wanted to make bakers out of my twin brother Bart and myself. Especially when, around the age of 13, it turned out that we were not excellent students. We had to learn a vocational profession and went to the hotel and bakery school in Antwerp. Unlike my brother Bart, I chose the hotel school. My father was disappointed.”

Were you already thinking about your own restaurant? “Sitting in my room at the Comme Chez Soi I was already thinking about the name of the restaurant, the interior, the type of kitchen, ... I dreamed and fantasized and made plans. A gourmet restaurant, that much was certain. In order to be able to open my own restaurant, I went to work for Carpe Diem for five years, just to make money. During those years I met my wife An.We decided to open the business together. I was 29 years old then. In the beginning it was tricky to find the right type of kitchen.”

You started at the bottom of the ladder. Jan Menten: “During my studies I worked for the Tongeren caterer Carpe Diem. I started as a dishwasher and became increasingly more involved. Every weekend I went with Jan Wirix. First it was just carrying bins around, then cutting some parsley here and there... Small steps forward. I was working my way up quietly;”

You took the standard path of internships and work placements at star businesses.

What is important in your kitchen? “I only work with top-quality products. Price is not important. We have a real product kitchen. Product and flavour are very important. That’s how I am building our kitchen. And good sauces, those are my forte. Fantasies rank third for me.”

“I got some nice internships: Aux Quatre Saisons with one star, Bruneau with three stars and at the same time I was doing a lot of cooking at Carpe Diem. My first job was at the Scholteshof, a two8


aprons that connect the world

Your preferred culinary city is San Sebastian, after which you named your apron line. “Together with my wife and children we were on holiday in Saint-Jean-de-Luz, quite close to San Sebastian. The weather wasn’t great and we drove on. I had already read a few articles saying that the Spanish city is the mecca of the culinary world. It has the most Michelin stars per square meter. It is a great city with a split between an old and a new part. In the old part you could eat tasty tapas in an informal atmosphere. In the new part there are many star businesses. That mix between the ‘regular’ kitchen and the star level appeals to me. We let ourselves be surprised at all levels.”

How important do you find the appearance of floor staff? “I think our San Sebastian apron line is very rejuvenating and the colours match the restaurant. A catering business where staff wear nice aprons, usually also serves good food. It sends a signal. A beautiful apron immediately evokes a positive image and also shows that the people pay attention to much more than just the food.”

ABOUT DE MIJLPAAL Restaurant De Mijlpaal is a fixture in the gourmet landscape in Tongeren and is operated by Jan Menten and his wife An Penxten. The building used to house the bakery of Jan’s parents. It has boasted one Michelin star and a high score . More info: www.demijlpaal.org.

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aprons that connect the world

San Sebastian Red

(REDM08)

Grey

(GRYM03)

Black

(BLKM08)

35% cotton, 65% polyester Wash at 60°

Long waist apron: SANT Dimensions: 75 x 90 cm

Apron: SANAPR Dimensions: 100 x 70 cm

Short waist apron: SANM Dimensions: 40 x 65 cm

““In San Sebastian the

juxtaposition between the ‘regular’ kitchen in the old part of the city and the star level in the new part of the city appeals to me.”


aprons that connect the world

For ‘atypical’ star chef Dimitry Lysens, it’s always about the plate

MAGICAL MAGIS Atypical and self-taught: two words that Dimitry Lysens uses, but does not like to hear about himself. For the chef of star restaurant Magis in Tongeren, the plate remains the most important thing, “but for most people that is barely 25% of the total experience.” Atypical? You decide.

Experience 25% plate

University degree in marketing in his pocket, never spent one day at the hotel school and landed a stuffy office job at an insurance company. Hardly a traditional catering path, but then culinary passion took over. Together with his wife and sommelier Aagje Moens - degree in economics, atypical? - and after a few years of “cooking for friends and family” they took a leap of faith into the catering business.

In 2019 Magis celebrates the tenth anniversary of their Michelin star. Over the years, Dimitry has seen the gourmet industry evolve: “I am not so sensitive to the whole experience, but I know that the customer is”, he realizes. “I used to think the plate was 75% of the experience, then I thought it was 50% and at the moment I have moved away from that entirely. The plate is only 25% of the total experience. For me, gourmet eating is just about the plate: good food and good wines. Obviously, something spectacular should be happening on my plate, but it shouldn’t be too complicated. Simplicity makes dishes sing. That is art. My kitchen is about returning to the basics as much as possible, but I always have to meet a certain expectation pattern. Flanders doesn’t have room for extremes

Peter Goossens From a much too small building on the Grote Markt in Tongeren they moved to the current location in the Hemelingenstraat. “Far too big and way too expensive,” says Dimitry. “If I had known then what I know now, I would have never done it. Both my father and Aagje’s father said: ‘You two are crazy’. We were young and indeed crazy. Two years later, in 2009, we won our Michelin star. It all turned out all right.”

Sourdough bread

Dimitry remembers it as if it were yesterday. “At 8 o’clock in the morning Aagje got a phone call from Peter Goossens, I was still in bed. With my groggy head he told me that I’d better get out of bed, because everyone was coming over to eat at my place. That star has had a huge impact. I was being pulled in every direction”, says former Young Top Chef of Flanders.

Besides meat - “I am a real meat eater and can easily eat 500 grams of steak” - Dimitry is proud of his homemade sourdough bread. Lysens: “I am pretty proud of that. I can count the star chefs who cook their own sourdough bread on one hand. I still do that the old-school way and put a lot of time and effort into it.” He discovered his love for baking sourdough bread in Copenhagen, ‘food city’ 13


aprons that connect the world work in the kitchen and vice versa. That’s great. “

par excellence for the father of two children. “In Copenhagen, at the beginning of my career, I ate and tasted things that were ‘eye-openers’ at the time. With a number of chefs - including with Jan Menten- we went to eat in Noma. For years it was the best restaurant in the world. The kitchens in other restaurants were also great. All at a very high level. They are all about returning to the basics, to the way in which food was stored a hundred years ago. That way you get more intense flavours. There is also an enormous form of professionalism that I have never seen before. Everyone lives in this ‘vibe’ to be the best restaurant or the best bistro. I have the feeling that anyone from the floor staff could

Catering aprons ‘Floor staff ’, there it is. “Everything starts with kindness. From the first moment that people come in, this has to be radiated. This is where Pavelinni’s catering aprons help to bring about the right atmosphere. Aprons also help to better explain the idea and concept of the restaurant. In addition, the aprons must match the interior and the meals. If this has been thought through well, it makes people more comfortable”, concludes Dimitry..

ABOUT MAGIS Magis is a one-star Michelin restaurant in the Hemelingenstraat in Tongeren. In the Gault & Millau guide of 2019 they are rewarded with a handsome 17 out of 20. Chef is Dimitry Lysens, whose wife, sommelier Aagje Moens, assists him on the floor. More info: www.restaurantmagis.be.

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aprons that connect the world

Kopenhagen Chocolat (CHOM02)

Beige

(BEIM02)

Black

(BLKM04)

35% cotton, 65% polyester Wash at 60°

Long waist apron: KOT Dimensions: 88 x 80 cm

Apron: KOAPR Dimensions: 100 x 70 cm

Short waist apron: KOM Dimensions: 36 x 65 cm

“In Copenhagen, there is this

incredible professionalism in the hospitality industry. Anyone working the floor could work in the kitchen and vice versa.”


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