New Models #3: the indie cuisine of Julie Basset

2020-08-22 02-32-58

In 2020, we launched NEW MODELS, a series of portraits and interviews of people and initiatives shaping tomorrow’s world. Fashion, food, design… How can we produce differently? Who is shaking things up and why?

For this new escapade, we met Julie Basset, nomad chef and founder of Cheffe Studio. Enjoying total freedom, she creates generous and tailored neo-bistro-inspired cuisine as a chef-caterer for individuals as well as fashion and contemporary art events. More than “nouvelle cuisine,” she embraces a new lifestyle and a new way to work, always driven by her passion and exceptional aesthetic sense.

In 2015, Julie Basset launched “Cheffe” with the aim of giving more visibility to women in a very masculine environment. And, because she always does things her own way, Julie Basset never stays behind the same stove: “I’m a nomadic chef, an independent chef, a private chef. I cook and accept culinary creation projects wherever the wind carries me. I made the conscious decision not to have an actual restaurant. There’s a kind of artistic lifestyle about this that I really like.

Two years later, she added “Studio” to the name, expanding her activity to new horizons, between food styling and artistic installations. An opportunity for her to diversify her playing field and return to a more aesthetic approach, an extension of her art and visual communication studies. “I added the Studio when I started to accept who I really was and share my visual universe beyond just my services as a chef and other catering orders. The idea was to collaborate with talents around me, to combine convenience and beauty, and to move from the kitchen to the studios.”

Also read: New Models #2: an ode to African know-how with Ômol

Julie Basset works not only with food, but also with memories and emotions. Her motto: “Enhance the raw product.” For inspiration, she readily turns to bistro dishes and traditional home-cooking. In the studio, she concocts creations that break away from snobby foodie diktats: “I have a curious, colourful, sunny universe with a touch of street food thrown in.” For summer lunches or aperitifs, Julie focuses on freshness: “Seasonal vegetables sliced super-thin with a mandoline slicer, like a carpaccio, served raw and crisp, arranged on a large platter to share and accompanied with my 3A sauce: 1/3 Argan oil, 1/3 citrus zest and juice and 1/3 Agave syrup. Add some baby greens and edible flowers and eat chilled.”

The future of food: more digital, but also more human

Like other sectors, the restaurant industry took a severe blow from the COVID-19 crisis. For Julie, the future of food will adopt a more digital and personalised approach: “The uberisation of services, already highly present, will develop even more. Everything is going digital, with a focus on delivery. Small places might shut down, fashionable ones will remain, fast food will line its pockets and maybe private chefs will become a common thing!” The future is also a chance to make a complete change: “Personally speaking, I have a deep-rooted need to grow my own products, to be closer to the land than ever before.” Motivated by this impulse, she decided to leave her last loft-workshop in the 18th arrondissement of Paris in search of a project closer to nature.

Discover it here: the Cheffe Studio website and the Instagram account of Julie Basset

AMV Journal is a space dedicated to encounters, discovery and travel. Every week, explore the musts, portraits and inspirations of American Vintage and its creation studio.