Trackday with Luca

We hung out with Luca Ragnelli, a true petrolhead, restaurant owner, skiier, cyclist and excellent chef from Geneva. Whatever Luca is involved in, he does it with passion. After burning some rubber on the track we had a chat with him over a cold Italian beer.

How and why did you become a chef?

I started cooking in my families restaurant. My dad was a chef and he introduced me to the love for cooking. After high school  I was morn drawn towards doing something with my hands rather then going to University. After working in a few 5 star hotels and high class restaurants, I decided to go to a hotel management college, which allowed me to open my own restaurant, “le Décanteur” in Geneva, 12 years after my first introduction into the world of cooking.

What are you looking for when you are cooking?

My cuisine is simple and pays tribute to seasonal products. I love the italian and french cuisine. There is nothing better then going to the market to choose the products I will cook later. I am a big fan of taking vegetables or seafood as a base and building up the tastes with different herbs.

What inspires you?

The moments that inspire me the most are away from my business, when my spirit is free. This can be behind the wheel of a classic car on a racetrack, spending time with my family, skiing, cycling or having a beer with a friend. Foodwise I get inspired by exotic cuisines when I am traveling, reading a book or simply going to the market. Inspiration is everywhere – just soak it up.

What is passion for you?

Passion is everything to me. The first chef I learned from always said when we were preparing the dishes: “Don’t forget to add love to the plates my Loulou.” It’s a simple saying with a lot of meaning – so it stuck with me. I am passionate about loads of things so I am rarely bored. All the things I am interested in have an esthetic and technical component: This goes from a dish presented to a client, to my ski pants that need to be light, functional and stylish to the Momo steering wheel on my Porsche. People often say that I am an esthete which is quite flattering.

What do you love about Porsches so much?

To me the 911 is the perfect car. You can drive it everyday to work, to get groceries, to visit your grandma over the weekend or take it on to the racetrack. One car does it all. Then the esthetics, the timeless design of the car, the sound, the smell and the feeling of driving it. And last but not least the technical aspect: these cars are built to last and of course to go fast.

Trackday with Luca
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