World Chefs: No borders for Heinz Beck in culinary world

Tue Oct 16, 2012 11:17am EDT
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By Patricia Reaney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - For award-winning chef Heinz Beck, who has earned three Michelin stars for his Italian restaurant La Pergola in Rome, there are no borders in the culinary world.

The German-born chef presides over arguably the top restaurant in the Italian capital, is married to a Sicilian woman, and has restaurants dotted around Europe, including Gusto by Heinz Beck, which opened recently in Portugal.

He has also written eight books on food and cooking and has collaborated on other works looking into the impact of nutrition on illnesses such as diabetes, obesity in children and blood pressure.

"We are what we eat. If we eat the right way we will be stronger and healthier," he explained.

Beck spoke to Reuters during a recent trip to New York about living in Italy, his restaurant at the Waldorf Astoria's Rome Cavalieri hotel, and how much he has learned from his mother-in-law and wife.

Q: How did a chef born and trained in Germany end up running a three-Michelin star restaurant in Rome?

A: "It is not Germany or Italy anymore, it is Europe. I'm a European chef so I can work in the whole of Europe."

Q: Did you always want to be a chef?   Continued...

World renowned Chef Heinz Beck looks on as he prepares a special pasta luncheon to serve to marathon runners at Waldorf Astoria Chicago in Chicago, Illinois October 6, 2012. REUTERS/Timothy Hiatt/Waldorf Astoria Chicago