EXECUTIVE CHEF ANTOINE RODRIGUEZ: TAKING LE MERIDIEN KUALA LUMPUR TO NEW CULINARY HEIGHTS

Long serving Chef Antoine the driving force behind the hotel’s culinary success Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur continues to reach new levels of culinary distinction as one of the leading lights in the city’s cosmopolitan dining scene. The hotel’s six acclaimed F&B venues continue to gain new fans and prestigious awards, proving there is no substitute for creative innovation, passion, meticulous attention to detail and unmatched culinary skills. The creative driving force behind Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur’s culinary pre-eminence is Chef Antoine Rodriguez. Born in France, Chef Antoine joined Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur as Executive Chef in 2004 and the hotel’s culinary reputation has gone from strength to strength ever since.  
He is one of the longest serving executive chefs of an-international 5 star hotel in Kuala Lumpur and has a simple yet compelling philosophy: “Food is what brings people together and we strive to ensure the best is served,” Chef Antione says.
   
With Italian seafood restaurant Favola, award-winning Prime steakhouse, Gastro Sentral and Pool Bar & Grill @ 8 under his personal direction, Chef Antoine’s responsibilities are wide-ranging. He oversees culinary operations, food conceptualisation, promotions, menu planning and service delivery standards of a large multicultural team of 120 kitchen professionals. In fact Chef derives great satisfaction from nurturing talented chefs and encourages them to continually push the boundaries. He supports his chefs to enter competitions in order to further motivate and enhance their self-confidence. Team work and the ability to spot and develop talent is a key aspect of long term, sustainable success, he believes.
Well travelled Chef Antoine has gained 40 years’ experience initially in Africa, the Caribbean and Asia, and his passion for food and commitment to excellence remains as strong as ever.  This expertise and an unwavering belief in being the best have translated into unprecedented success for Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur over the years. 
He was recognised as ‘Chef of the Year’ and ‘King of the Kitchen’ at the prestigious Hospitality Asia Platinum Awards (HAPA)  2016 – 2018 Regional Series and was the first to gain successive HAPA awards in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 for ‘Best Executive Chef.’  He was also instrumental in securing a host of accolades for Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur including HAPA’s “Best Asian Cuisine 2005/2006,” Asia’s Finest Restaurants” by Miele Guide 2011/2012 and overall winner of the Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) Black Box Challenge 2007.
The hotel is also the proud recipient of awards from influential lifestyle publication Time Out for ‘Best Steak House’ for Prime in 2011 and more recently for ‘Best Food & Drink Award’ in Kuala Lumpur for Favola. Prime was also voted ‘Best Hotel Restaurant 2016’ by Expatriate Lifestyle. Such is his status among peers, Chef Antoine has also served as a chef judge in a hospitality school competition, and colleagues that have served with him have themselves become award winning chefs.
Guests can look forward to equally impeccable Italian fare at Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur.  Favola creates quite a first impression, adorned with classical murals depicting historic Venetian scenes. This rustic Italian setting promises a captivating culinary journey with delightful dishes such as Porcini Mushroom Risotto topped with Seared Escalope of Foie Gras and Light Jus, paired with classic Italian fine wines.
Multi award winning PRIME steak house serves up the finest imported US and Australian beef cuts in a stylish contemporary setting. Framed by floor-to-ceiling wine walls, it is the perfect spot for an intimate celebration with a private dining room for 10, offering a personal view of the kitchen.
Guests can savour a more carefree ambience at Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur’s Gastro Sentral. The comprehensive all-day menu brings a refreshing new twist to pub style casual fare with an imaginative array of Continental, Asian and local delights. The open plan layout and comfortable seating makes for a convivial atmosphere for sharing tapas bites or to mix and mingle over a craft beer.
The hotel also serves up an innovative buffet spread for breakfast, lunch and dinner at signature restaurant Latest Recipe. Charismatic chefs skilfully perform interactive live cooking, catering to every conceivable palate, including Malay, Indian, Chinese, Japanese and Western favourites. The restaurant’s eye catching decor perfectly complements the inventive gastronomic options at this highly popular Kuala Lumpur eatery.
Away from the kitchen, Chef’ Antoine’s passion is on the golf course where he can be found striving to lower his current handicap of 16. Much like his decorated culinary career to date, there is a sense that even during leisure time he doesn’t stop pushing himself to greater heights.   

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