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Jean Paul Naquin
featured chefs jean paul naquinbio

Jean Paul Naquin was born in Lyon, France on January 1, 1963. He began cooking country style food at an early age with his mother using the rich

produce grown in the gastronomic cradle of France. Together, they created simple but delicious meals for the numerous guests who came to socialize at their family home.

While in his teens, after his first apprenticeship, he joined La Pyramide (3 Michelin Star) in Vienne as Comm

is Tournant only 25 minutes from his family home. He ingrained himself with the great Classical French Cuisine. In the service of his country he joined the Army in 1983 and served under the General of the French Force in Baden Baden, Germany, his first of many foreign assignments. After the military tour he moved to Paris and joined Restaurant Jacqueline Fenix (1 Michelin Star) for a year and learned about the “Nouvelle Cuisine”. This was a springboard that launched him to the great Michel Guerard (3 Michelin Star). As Chef de Partie he was responsible for the pastry and cold kitchen. The food was “Cuisine Minceur & Gourmande”. Under the orchestration of Michel Guerard, Naquin became well versed in a healthy cooking style from one of the originators of “Spa Cuisine”.

Continuing on he took the opportunity to join the culinary team at the Hotel Le Gray D’Albion (2 Michelin Star) in Cannes under the wings of Chef Jacques Chibois, who was awarded Best Chef of the Year in 1986. Chibois unique style is influenced by the availability of an abundance of Mediterranean products combined with simplicity and astonishing creativity.

In 1986 Jean Paul moved to the Caribbean as Executive Chef at the Restaurant L’Aventure on Saint Martin. Overcoming challenges such as learning English, understanding the American clientele’s expectations, adapting to a 3-seating concept per meal period and being in charge of the kitchen in a lackadaisical island environment solidified his skills as a promising talent and determined chef.

Jacques Chibois called Jean Paul in 1987 for the position of Executive Sous Chef for the opening of the Hotel Maxim’s de Paris in New York (now the Peninsula New York). The opening experience was a tremendous opportunity and being on the same team again with Jacques Chibois was enlightening. Jean Paul benefited greatly from New York and became absorbed with the Asian restaurant scene while developing a passion for the Far East.

In 1988, at the expiration of his contract, Jean Paul packed his bags and relocated to the Sheraton Hotel and Towers in Hong Kong to accept the position of Sous Chef. Here he learned about volume operations and got to experience the East and West culinary combinations. He stayed there for 2 years and then took the position of Executive Sous Chef at the Palace Hotel Beijing managed by the Peninsula Group. The Palace Hotel is one of the finest properties in all of China. This experience sharpened his skills tremendously as he was instrumental in the creation of some incredible theme events at historic locations such as, The Great Wall of China, The Forbidden City and The Summer Palace to name but a few.

In 1993, he took first Executive Chef position at the Oberoi Hotel, Member of the Leading Hotels of the World, in Bali. He learned the Indonesian language, appreciated the food and continued to focus on the refined guest experience while absorbing this exotic culture.

In 1995 he was lured away by Shangri-La Hotels to become the Executive Chef at the Jakarta Property. This 5 star operation was sound, well organized, creative and very competitive. After 2 years a once in a lifetime opportunity placed Jean Paul at the other end of the Ocean again as he took the position of Executive Chef/Director of Culinary Operations at the Atlantis Resort, managed by Sun International in the Bahamas. This resort is the largest island casino operation in the world with a culinary team of over 700 people who served 13,000 covers daily for a total of $120 million in F&B sales. The experience was incredible from the grand opening to the re-structuring and expansion of the hotel.

After two and a half years he decided to return to Asia and work in a smaller size operation where he could be involved in the true cooking side of his profession. Having been part of big picture projects, organizing, planning and running 37 outlets, he is now enjoying the opportunity to lead the Ritz-Carlton, as Executive Chef. A position he accepted in August, 2000.

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Duck Pot au Feu
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