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  • Writer's pictureSasha Huang

How Racines' Chefs Romain Dupeyre & Adrien Castillo Bring Casual French Fine Dining to Sheung Wan

INTERVIEW



Nestled amidst the charming streets of Sheung Wan, Racines exudes an air of understated elegance and sophistication. This culinary gem is a masterpiece crafted not by one, but by two distinguished chefs who have joined forces to showcase their exceptional skills.


The name Racines, is pronounced as "rasin" and is derived from the French language. It embodies two distinct meanings - "root" as a part of a plant and "root" as an origin. For chefs Romain Dupeyre and Adrien Castill, Racines represents the root of their culinary journey: the southwest of France. Dupeyre hails from the city of Nice, while Castill grew up in Toulouse. The two chefs first met as apprentices at the two-Michelin-starred restaurant La Chèvre d’Or, before crossing paths once again at the iconic Ritz Paris in 2016. Several years later, fate brought them together once again, this time in Hong Kong, where they decided to collaborate and create Racines.


At Racines, the chefs' culinary expertise shines through, as they offer a modern take on classic French dishes. Their passion for terroir, family, and friendship is evident in every aspect of the restaurant, making it a unique and unforgettable experience.


We had the pleasure of sitting down with Chef Romain Dupeyre and Chef Adrien Castill, who shared with us their inspiring stories and the culinary magic they create at Racines.



1. What are both of your cooking philosophies and how have you combined or transformed them?

We are both from the south of France and we both come from families where we learn how to eat well, with the beautiful products you can find in our region. We started our culinary venture together at the age of 15, at la Chèvre d’or, a two Michelin starred restaurant in the French Riviera.

That's where our journey started and where we learned our first techniques, love and respect for the products we used, and our passion and philosophy started to take shape and grow. We both worked alongside each other for 7 years in different restaurants in France, that’s why our philosophy didn’t need to be transformed when we started Racines, it came naturally with all the years we've been working together.



2. How do you work as a team to run a restaurant together?

We have ultimate trust between us! So for the management of our restaurant everything settled quite easily.


We share all our ideas together whether it is for the creation of our menu or the management of the staff or even when we entertain our guests while being in service. Same for the daily tasks for example the food ordering or finding new suppliers. We evolve together in this adventure side by side.



3. Can you share with us three tips for chefs looking to start a restaurant venture together?

1. Choose wisely the way you build your restaurant, the atmosphere you want to create and if you can picture yourself for the next few years there, as you will spend a lot of time and you want to feel happy to work in your own place.


2. Surround yourself with a team that has the same passion and vision as you have for your restaurant, bring them alongside you in your journey and they will give it back to you in many different ways, they will help you make you grow in different aspects on your journey.


3. Cook for your guest and yourself, listen to feedback and make sure you're giving the guest an experience that comes from your passion, at the end of the day it will be your guest that will make you able to work on a daily basis.



4. What do you hope to bring to the culinary scene of Hong Kong?


We hope to bring a casual French fine dining experience, a place where you can be close to the chef by talking with them as much as seeing them while being in service. We want to offer a smaller venue where you can feel cosy and relax.



5. What do you hope your guests will take away from dining at Racines?


We hope guests feel that they've had a memorable and unique experience, where they can feel themselves and enjoy a different take on French food. We hope they can feel our true identity and passion from us and our team.


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All imagery is provided by Racines.



Address: 22 Upper Station St, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong SAR | Website: racineshk.com | Whatsapp: +852 5742 6539 | Email: info@racineshk.com | Instagram: @racines.hk

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