5 minutes with Chef Julien Royer

Since its opening in late 2015, Odette is the up and coming starlet of the dining scene in little red dot, Singapore. Odette is named after Chef Julien Royer’s grandmother, one of his greatest influences in life and in the kitchen. His belief in the thoughtful delivery of each meal is manifested through the sourcing of his ingredients from some of the finest boutique producers around the world. His hard work has paid off considering his restaurant was awarded 2 Michelin stars in 2016.

Here Chef Julien shares with us candidly about his favourite Singaporean dishes and his thoughts on the upcoming Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017.

Aspire Lifestyles: You’ve been in Singapore since 2011. So what’re your favourite Singapore local delights and where would you go to have them?

Chef Julien: There are so many great places and cuisines to enjoy here in Singapore. I am a huge fan of Tanjong Rhu pau! I also love visiting Din Tai Fung for Xiao Long Baos. Indian cuisine in Singapore is absolutely great. I frequent Bismillah Biryani for their biryani. It is the only dish prepared there and it is the best I’ve had. The restaurant closes once the biryani is sold out.

Aspire Lifestyles: You’ve done quite a number of four-hands dinner with different chefs, can you share who would be a dream chef you would like to collaborate with and why?

Chef Julien: I’d love to collaborate with one of my greatest influencers and early mentors, Chef Michel Bras. Chef Bras has had a great influence on my journey as a chef. His belief in allowing vegetables to take equal footing on a plate with the proteins has instilled in me a deep respect for the integrity and purity of each ingredient in every dish.

He has also had a great influence on me as a leader. He had an amazing ability to extract the best out of every individual through the cultivation of an environment which gives his team the space and autonomy to exercise our creativity and to learn from our peers. I’ve hence tried to create this creative and open environment for my team as well.

Aspire Lifestyles: Last but not least, what’re your aspirations for this year’s Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants and how do you envision Odette to grow in 2017?

Chef Julien: If we are presented with an entry into the list a year into our opening it would be an unexpected vote of confidence and an absolute honour. As such a young restaurant that is still growing and evolving, we are still working to establish ourselves.

It has been a remarkable year and the team has put in an incredible amount of hard work and heart to deliver the Odette experience. Our priority for 2017 is to continue delivering unforgettable guest experiences by presenting remarkable dishes made with the purest ingredients, delivered in the most thoughtful, welcoming and hospitable manner. We hope to continue pushing this through for years to come.