TELEVISION – an elimination close to the quarter-finals. Having won a large number of events inside the blue brigade of this thirteenth season of Top Chef, Mickaël Braure left the competition for good on Wednesday 18 May.
At the time of this fourteenth bonus aired on M6, the five candidates still in the running clashed in the kitchens of Jean Imbert, in Plaza Athénée. They had to seduce the former winner of Top Chef revisiting the vol-au-vent. Coming second in the event, Mickaël had to defend his place in a tomato event where he was supported by chef Alexandre Gauthier. Upon giving up at the end of this second event, he found himself as a last resort against Sébastien for an event on the lamb. And if the four jurors were challenged by his totally black dish, his lamb tartare with cuttlefish ink did not allow him to keep his place in the competition.
Having moved from prestigious houses in the north of France, Mickaël Braure has decided to fly alone. At 25 he opens his first restaurant, the Bistrot du “Witloof”, where he boasts a peasant and sexy cuisine. His motto: “Fat is life”.
After his elimination, he agreed to answer some questions posed by The HuffPost:
Leave the kitchens of Top Chef close to the quarter-finals. What did you miss this week to go further?
It’s still a shame to start now, so close to the quarter-finals. I would say I simply lost 30 seconds to successfully cook my sweetbread on the first test. It would have allowed me to qualify directly. It was a good experience and the others were better, that’s all.
We can see that Philippe Etchebest is very moved by your departure. How were these fourteen weeks of competition alongside him?
It was wonderful to be alongside this great chef. I don’t know if I could have gone that far in the adventure if I hadn’t evolved alongside him. He was a bit like a dad because he was always there when we had problems or questions. There was a very fatherly bond between him and his candidates. He is very moved by my departure and it hurts my heart to leave Top Chef because I knew I’d more or less put an end to this relationship with Chief Etchebest. We are still in contact and he calls me very often to check on me.
What did it bring you?
It has brought me security, stability and confidence in my kitchen. She knew how to trust me at every event, giving me good advice. So I could only get there correctly.
“I think Pascal will become a great chef”
If you had been qualified, you would have gone to the Viola. Would you have struggled to leave your home team?
I did not think about it. Frankly I would have been ripped off. I would have been happy to win my seat but disappointed to leave Chef Etchebest. I have nothing against Paul Pairet but my boss is Philippe Etchebest. I saw myself go to the end of the adventure with him and no one else.
And with Pascal, what connection did you have with him?
I had a very protective bond with Pascal. I wanted to protect him during rehearsals and outside as well. I wanted him to be okay and reassured. There was a somewhat paternal bond. I am very surprised by his ability and his talent. I sincerely believe that he will become a great chef.
What were your motivations for taking part in the adventure?
I wanted to surpass myself and demonstrate that you can do bistronomic cuisine in everyday life and expect to do high-level cuisine as in Top Chef. For the anecdote, he was a friend and former candidate to sign me up: Damien Laforcecontestant of season 10.
You are one of the tattooed candidates of the season. Tell us the story behind your joint tattoo?
It was done in a bedroom very late at night (laughs). Louise made them for us. It wasn’t the best idea we had that day, but it’s a lot of fun and I don’t regret it at all.
Do you have a shooting anecdote to share?
I loved the moments when we all got together in the sitting room, before rehearsals started. We were joking and trying to relax each other. It was moments of pressure but at the same time we were striving to make it fun. So we did a lot of bullshit (laughs). Top Chef it was a real summer camp. At the same time, we all have the same humor, we like the same things and we have all been confined together for 2 and a half months. So obviously make links.
“A sausage concept might just work”
How is your restaurant war going: Philo Sausages?
It’s a hit, the people are very happy, and the setting is great. It really is a great work tool.
Did you expect to win this event?
A concept around sausage, it just might work (laughs).
What are your future projects today?
I am opening a new facility. It will be right next to where I already have my first place, the Witloof bistro. In fact, we are in the process of renovating a farmhouse. There will be a micro brewery where we will make our own beer. There will also be a tapas bar with sausages and a restaurant section. There is a lot of work to be done, so the opening is scheduled for 2023.
A little tip?
At the beginning of Top Chef, I wasn’t betting on any of the four still in the running (laughs). Now, I’d say Louise and Pascal, because they have the ability to make it happen.
See also on The HuffPost: We tested the restaurant of the “restaurant war” in “Top Chef”