In De Wulf*, Nature's kitchen by Kobe Desramaults
“Our philosophy is to create an experience that is honest about who and where we are, the constraints of our philosophy are both our biggest challenge and our motivating force. Our kitchen is therefore sometimes brutal, sometimes soft, but always natural.”
Every kitchen experience is unique, but in selecting the places where to get involved I’m quite picky as I want it to be in line with my personal convictions. During my stay at In de Wulf* I began to understand why it ranked as high on many lists, Kobe Desramaults remains humble despite the recognition and the praising. You know they say you only have one chance to make a first impression? Well, when on my first day, and I won’t forget it, Kobe was helping to do the dishes because the dishwasher had a breakdown, I immediately recognized his grandeur…
It somehow reminded me of my experience in Sweden, a kitchen as pure, focusing on local produce and primary flavours. And at In De Wulf*, local really means local; every couple of days we went to the nearby woods for foraging fresh herbs and for the seasonal desert we picked the blackberries from the bushes at end of the road. As we stayed in a cozy little farm house down the street, we sometimes picked some herbs on our way to the restaurant in the morning. One day the Chef even drove us to sea where we picked the ripe sea buckthorns, a fruit that was unknown to me up to then. It struck me to hear that the Chef didn’t know what to make from it, but at the same time I sensed that he would come up with yet another creative idea that fully appreciates the citric flavour of the grapes. What would I use it for? To make a syrupy vinegar, a marmalade, or perhaps a fresh ice cream for a desert… Anyhow, it inspires me, can’t wait for it to be August again!
“If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen”, and so I did once a day. When it was time to clean the crabs, I had to work in the fridge to keep it fresh. And as we didn’t want the customers to break a tooth, I carefully had to pick all the small bits and pieces of shell and cartilage under an ultraviolet lamp in the dark fridge cell, a most refreshing experience in a hot summer kitchen I must admit! But the admiring smiles and impressed reactions of the satisfied customers when bringing them one creative dish after another in your chef’s uniform, is mostly comforting and fills you with pride.
Until today, Kobe Desramaults still remains one of the best chefs in the world, to have worked by his side is a reward as such, but an unforgettable experience to cherish above all. But it wouldn’t have been as complete if it weren’t for his amazing team, seldom have I met a Sous-Chef with the devotion and sincere passion Rose Green carries in her, she’s an incredible cook and a great people manager.
In De Wulf*
8950 Heuvelland (Dranouter)
Recently Rose, Kobe, and Sarah Lemke have started a bakery in Ghent, my hometown, completely in line with the philosophy of In de Wulf* as they chose to work with local and organic produce as much as possible. Sourdough bread baked in a genuine wood oven and other artisan goodies, tested and approved by Chad Robertson himself, how can one go against that… Today, I reckon Sarah to surely be the best baker in town, go and check it out for yourself, or click here to feel my first impressions.