Dedicated to the promotion of authentic Portuguese cuisine in Asia, chef Antonio Coelho from the Antonio Restaurant in Macau, serves a wide variety of authentic Portuguese dishes and is a Michelin-recommended restaurant. Coelho’s culinary style has evolved through wide-ranging experiences at top luxury hotels and restaurants around the world, including his homeland Portugal, Africa, Hong Kong and Macau.
Luxury Lifestyle Awards is pleased to introduce Antonio Coelho – The Chief of elegant Antonio Restaurant Macau:
- So you started your career in 1985 in Lisbon. Why did you eventually decided to open your new restaurant in Macau, so far from home?
In the beginning, it was not my decision. Back to 1996, I was invited for coming to Macau (I was in that year working in Africa, Cabo Verde – before under Portuguese colony) to open a new restaurant from Dela Mar. I accepted and arrived in Macau on 28 January 1997 then after I open my first restaurant with partners in January 2003.
- Where your passion of food does comes from? We know that it was your hobby in the early times, but even then, why you liked it?
It’s easy, in the town where I grown up with my grandmother, she was a School Teacher and my father was a Veterinarian and in that town since my childhood, I began to eat a very good food, with the best quality you can imagine. In that time, back 1950s in interior of Portugal all food was fresh and natural and very “Fruche” and sometimes, the hobbies become our own job. Also, even like hobby but you can begin to feel the passion for what you are doing and it easy changed us.
- What is so special in Portuguese Cuisine, what makes it different from other cuisines?
It is the ingredients that we use and how it prepared, and the time of cooking and perhaps, the quality of the products produced in our country such as the assorted kinds of meat either beef, pork, chicken, duck, rabbit, lamb, and many more, the fish, seafood, and vegetables and spices that we have been used all these time.
What make us different, especially in my restaurant: When I put my five senses in what I am doing in cooking, I do it with love and passion, and the good quality of products we use. After, it is the art intuition comes to the top with authenticity and genuine.
- Do you have any plans or desires to open new restaurant in future or, in the contrary,leave the restaurant business and retire?
Cooking is my passion. For sure, I liked to open a new restaurant with Portuguese Food. Where,I don’t know. Let’s go to see.
- What do you think about the restaurant industry nowadays in general, how has it evolved in the recent years and what to expect in the next decades?
Unhappy today many people look for restaurants like an industry or a factory to win many. Many those looking only for restaurants like a factory making pins or glasses or whatever. In short, mass production and without or less quality. Everybody can see the example of “Fast Foods”. In future, I feel that the artisanal way of cooking will be reduced and will be very expensiveeating outside in a good restaurant.
- How important are different awards and honours for luxury restaurants? Do the clients pay attention to them when choosing and evaluating the places to go?
The awards and honours are very important to the restaurant, which is out of question. For everybody, in all world, especially in Asia where the guest want to try a kind of food different to his own country, the awards and honours is the symbol of guarantee of excellent food, wines, drinks with a very good service, good quality and hygiene.
Going to a restaurant with Awards and Honours is like going to UK to see the jewels of Crown of England. In our restaurant it is easy our guests take photos and comment.
- What do you think about Luxury Life Style Awards Asia 2015 in the context of luxury restaurants, is it important for the best restaurants in the industry to conquer for the GoldenCrown and attend the Gala Ceremony?
For sure, It is a great honour. The attribution of Golden Crown / Luxury Lifestyle Awards Asia 2015 is an honour for a restaurant that makes us proud and gives us very good incentive to become better and better. Also bringing us new customers and promotes better business. Attending the Gala Ceremony is the public result of everything that I wrote.