Maurice Lacroix When fine dining meets watchmaking...
Maurice Lacroix’s group of friends has grown once again. After sports and fashion, the brand is putting on a great spread and welcoming a duo of young chefs from Fribourg, Switzerland, to its team, Ben & Léo.
“I was won over by the adventurous and avant-garde nature of this pair , before I was even aware of their approach to fine dining. With a passion for cooking, they made their start and now enjoy significant success through their different ventures and their TV programme. They have a modern vision, a shared desire, a lasting friendship and ambition. Everything that a friend of the Maurice Lacroix brand should represent,” said a delighted Stéphane Waser, Managing Director.
During Ben & Léo’s visit to the manufacture, the talented pair were enthusiastic about the beginnings of this partnership. “We know the brand and it’s one we really value! We can see ourselves in the brand’s image, one that’s urban, innovative...and Swiss! Their dynamism makes us want to work on new projects together,” says the delighted duo. Charmed by a number of collections, the pair were as taken with the elegant sobriety of the Eliros as they were with the dynamism and contemporary spirit of the AIKON. “The AIKON is durable and sporty, all while remaining stylish, an ideal companion for a chef in the kitchen,” says Ben. While visiting the workshops, Léo was struck by the precision that goes into making watch movements. “Before sending dishes out to our diners, we work carefully to ensure that the aesthetic details are just so. It’ s similar to what the watchmaking artisans do.”
Léo and Ben © Maurice Lacroix
The journey of these two chefs has certainly been a successful one. Friends for almost 20 years, Ben and Léo quickly developed an interest in gastronomy. Ben was the first to give it a go, participating in two cooking competitions. He won them both. This marked the beginning of their adventure, as the two friends decided to offer their services during conceptual culinary evenings at a Fribourg wine bar.
Their next step was to participate in the TV programme MasterChef. This was a real revelation for this passionate and self-taught duo, who then went off for professional training: one at the Institut Paul Bocuse, the other at the École Alain Ducasse. A solid foundation that provided the momentum for what was to come.
Today, Ben & Léo own the Café de la Fonderie in Fribourg, where they organise a variety of fine dining events and where there is rarely an empty table. Also in Fribourg, they have opened the Le Cintra gastropub and the Kumo ramen bar, all while hosting the culinary TV programme Bon App’, which airs on Swiss French-language television.
Based in the Jura region of Switzerland, Maurice Lacroix has been producing fine Swiss timepieces for over 40 years and has developed 14 in-house movements over the past ten years.Find out more >
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