«I think one of the things that most ignites my passion is motherhood,» says Carolina Bazán, shy, laughing, in a video produced by the organization of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants ranking. «I feel like the restaurant is another child: you have to take care of every step, lead the way, be its tutor so that you make the right decisions and can walk on your own.» In 2003, when she herself was almost a baby (she was 23), the Chilean cook opened her first joint place with her mother. Ten years later, they moved that initial concept to a less central area and soon achieved recognition from the international food community. Its premise, which is also the premise of his restaurant Ambrosía, is simple: «My philosophy of cooking is that the food has to be rich. Sometimes the dishes are not the most aesthetically pretty, but they have to be rich. If he’s not rich, he doesn’t do his job,» he shoots.
Mother of two children, owner of two restaurants (in 2017 added Ambrosía Bistró, more uncontracted) and culinary reference, Bazán has just been chosen as the Best Female Chef in Latin America (if they ever read us, they know that we have doubts about that label). At the age of 39, he won one of the greatest accolades of the Latin version of the famous list. «To have been chosen the best female chef in Latin America by my peers is… I have a lot of respect from all my colleagues. Everyone who voted for me has been to one of my restaurants and they know that what I do, I do with a lot of passion and a lot of affection. This award seeks to make women’s work in the kitchen more useful: I would like to show them that it is not impossible to be a woman and reach a kitchen of this level,» she says. In another interview published by The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, the chef reflects more deeply on her role as a woman in a historically men’s field: «There were some awkward situations that would not have existed with more women in the kitchen, but it was nothing serious. Now, after my 18 years in the industry, I can clearly see that there are differences and that getting far as a woman is much more difficult.» Especially if you have to dedicate yourself to raising your children. «I think people see me as a chef, and that’s true. But I feel like besides being a chef, I’m a mother, and that’s another super intense job. There you notice a little difference with men: I feel like a lot of cooks don’t even make their bed.»
To expand its borders, Bazán cooked in Peru and also in France, where it managed to change its perspective. He replaced frozen ingredients with season ingredients and gave a more intimate, creative and personal imprint to his dishes; a transformation that led her to be part of the rankings in 2014 to never abandon it. «Every time I travel I like to bring some flavor that I have known and try to re-introduce it in my own way. I have a lot of Peruvian, Argentinian, American; a medley of flavors that I think there are few things that outweigh it,» he says. «What is the success? I believe that to constancy, to the support of all those around me and of all those who believe in what I do… To be true to my principles, to my flavors… To be very intense,» he finishes, laughing. In October, we hope to see you in Buenos Aires: the ceremony in which the Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019 will be announced will be thursday 10 at the Usina del Arte. In this note: