We sat down and had a conversation with Chef Joseph Hadad , the owner of Caju and Joseph restaurants, both located in Bucharest. Chef Joseph Hadad is a chef with a passion for innovation and love for culinary arts who creates masterpieces that dazzle and delight his guests. From Jerusalem to Germany, London, Boston and Paris, Chef Joseph Hadad created culinary magic and worked in the world’s most opulent, famous and Michelin star restaurants.
Chef Joseph Hadad holds the secrets of over 2000 sophisticated recipes and as a star of international cuisine he had the opportunity to create amazing culinary shows for worldwide celebrities.
1.Can you remember the moment you decided to become a Chef – what inspired you and what obstacles did you overcome to achieve your dream ?
My father was the one who inspired my passion for cooking and nowadays, nature is my main source of inspiration. Also, my love for gastronomy.
2. At the moment you have two top restaurants in Bucharest: Caju by Joseph Hadad and Joseph by Joseph Hadad. How difficult is it to run two successful restaurants? Is there a secret for it?
It’s quite a challenge and each day is different but the secret to succeed is to work side by side with your team and to get involved in any situation that requires your presence. Also, patience, curiosity and ambition are the key words.
3. How would you describe your style of cooking?
I think I can describe my style of cooking as fresh, clean, constantly evolving and globally inspired.
4. Do you have a “signature dish” or favorite dish you enjoy cooking?
That’s a tough call. I don’t have a favourite dish that I enjoy cooking, it depends. I like to cook everything, especially when I have local and fresh ingredients to work with. I try to think of an ingredient that I am working with and how I want to build the dish around it. Finding time for family life is tough for most famous Chefs.
5. Any suggestions for striking the right balance that you’ve learnt along the way?
When you want to achieve success, it’s important to find a balance between work and family. It can be very challenging but in the end, your family sustains you no matter what.
6. You spent time working overseas: how did those experiences of other food cultures shape your food?
We can all learn a lot from other food cultures. Each country’s cuisine can reflect its unique taste, values, and beliefs. I try to add in my dishes, a little bit of other food cultures, ingredients, way of cooking or plating.
7. You are a very famous Chef – how difficult is it to deal with this fame?
I do not consider myself a famous person. My desire is to be appreciated by my family, friends and dear customers. I believe success is much more important. Fame doesn’t fulfill you.
8. You started cooking at an early age and also continued as a book writer, TV personality and running businesses. Do you consider yourself quite native entrepreneurial?
If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you should start with a client necessity or desire, whether we are talking about food or a service. You have to make him happy, to feel special, in order for him to want to come back. And most important, no matter what you choose to do, you’ve got to put all the passion and to always go that extra miles. No matter how hard it seems and how many times you fail, you just can’t give up.
9. What new things are you working on at the moment, and what’s new for the future?
As a chef and owner, I must constantly always go that extra miles. No matter how hard it seems and how many times you fail, you just can’t give up. What new things are you working on at the moment, and what’s new for the future? As a chef and owner, I must constantly invest: in the team, as they are the most important for me and our main contact with the client, in the design, in the services of the restaurant. You must always bring something new regarding the menu and find the right balance between the fresh new touch and signature dishes. I try to adapt everything to achieve perfection, both in terms of food and service. As for the moment, I am working on these main points next to my team.