Chef André Chiang is to permanently close his two michelin star flagship Restaurant André in Singapore in early 2018 and will return to his hometown of Taipei to concentrate on his casual RAW concept and on training a new generation of chefs.
The news of the restaurant's final service on 14 February was announced in a statement on the restaurant's website. “I’m a perfectionist and for the past 30 years of my career, I’ve been looking for that unrealistic ‘moment of perfection’: Three Michelin stars, World’s Top 50 restaurant … Until now I realised, at this moment - it is perfect as it is,” it reads. Chiang also wants to return his Michelin stars and does not want to be included in the 2018 edition of the Michelin Guide Singapore: "I want to go back to cooking, have a balanced life and cook happily," he says.
"I want to make Asia proud"
Speaking to Fine Dining Lovers, Chiang said he felt good about the decision, and it was time to reconnect to his roots and reorganise his professional life: "I was born in Taiwan and have spent the past 30 years cooking, since I was 13. I feel there’s a part missing – I don’t know much about Asia. I hope I will now have more time to understand my own homeland’s produce and culture, and make Asia proud. Asia shouldn’t only have one Andre, it should have hundreds of them. Why is there only one Chinese chef on the World’s 50 best list? There should be more talent and great restaurants. I hope I can pass on my knowledge and do something more for China and Taiwan. I feel I have a responsibility rather than something to prove. Restaurant André has nothing to prove."
Chiang also told us that should the Michelin Guide arrive in Taiwan, he would not want to be included, saying the restaurant was a "gift to Taiwan." He also said he has no plans to open another restaurant in Taipei or Taiwan at present.
Chiang opened Restaurant André in 2010, having trained under the likes Pierre Gagnaire, Joël Robuchon and Michel Troisgros in France, and quickly gained a loyal following for his exquisite French-Mediterranean food. It currently sits at number 14 on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list and number two on Asia's 50 Best Restaurants sponsored by S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna.