An allergy made me value the food I eat
Daryl Pope, Maître Rôtisseur, is Executive Chef and Owner of Artisan Bistro, an upscale French bistro located in Broadmead, Victoria, British Columbia. Chef Pope discovered his passion for cooking in his teens, graduating from Camosun College with his Red Seal.
- Grand Marnier Dessert Challenge - Winner
- apprenticed at the exclusive Aerie Resort with Executive Chef Christophe Letard
- 2011 Chef of the Year Cooking Competition - Third Place
- Old English Inn Resort with Executive Chef, Richard Luttman
- Corporate Chef at SYSCO, Victoria
- consulting service for Vancouver Island restaurants
- contracted by Royal Canadian Navy for the Service’s ten Orca Class Vessels
- Restaurant Chef at The Westin Hotel, Edmonton
- Restaurant Chef at Hotel Grand Pacific’s Four Star Restaurant
Chef Pope’s aim was to own and operate his own establishment. Very successful, Artisan Bistro offers fine dining, a complementary wine list and other menus. Chef Pope has cooked for several Chaîne dinners in British Columbia and Alberta.
Where does your love of gastronomy come from?
Allergic to wheat and dairy as a kid made me value the food I eat. That changed at age 15 when I started eating everything I hadn't eaten before. I wanted to know how to make great food.
You have obviously inspired a lot of professionals in the industry – from where (or who) do you draw your inspiration?
I am inspired by trying and creating new dishes; so many cuisines and combinations to try! Love them all!
What would you say have been the biggest developments in hospitality that you have witnessed in your years as a restaurateur?
The challenges faced in hiring staff, no-one really wants to work for little pay, long hours in a stressful industry. I hope things can change to make it attractive again.
What do you think are the most significant trends or challenges faced in the industry today?
People are starting to eat healthy, wanting to see some healthier options on the menu.
What do you think today’s industry professionals should be doing to keep moving gastronomy and hospitality to a new level?
“Don’t make the same dish”. Why make the same food, over and over when a twist or change of ingredients can make it special? It’s like art, who would go to see the same painting if it was in every gallery?
What advice would you give to young, aspiring restaurateurs?
Use quality ingredients when cooking. It shows. Shop local, support our farmers. Cutting corners, buying cheap stuff, it’s not worth it. In this profession, to produce quality starts with the ingredients.
Food photos (c) Artisan Bistro