Jean-Georges Vongerichten, 54, is one of the world’s leading chefs, with 15 restaurants that span the globe, including his three-Michelin-starred Jean Georges in Manhattan, where he has lived since 1986. His newest restaurant, Spice Market London, has opened at W Hotel in Leicester Square, London.
Suit by Prada
I gravitate towards a grey, dark brown, charcoal and navy colour palette. I think things should be seasonless and timeless and it’s how I feel restaurants should be as well. You can’t go wrong with a dark suit and crisp white shirt. I like Prada suits because they’re cut more narrow; I’m also a shorter guy and their jackets are cut shorter. When I was younger, I dressed the way I cooked: with more colour. I would always put so many ingredients on the same plate but as I got older I really wanted to focus on just the essential flavours. I try not to put more than three things on a plate now. And this is also how I dress now. I don’t have time to try and co-ordinate in the morning. I lead a busy life in the restaurant business so what I wear has to be practical, comfortable and made from great fabric. For my chef jacket, which I wear three-quarters of my day, I use Egyptian cotton because everything else makes me itch. I also never wear a belt because when you tie on the apron it gets too bulky at the waist. As I tell all my cooks, “you cook the way you look”.
Sweater by Prada
It’s wool and cashmere and I wear a simple T-shirt underneath. I like clean, simple lines. Sometimes when I’m rushing from meetings to the restaurant, I change in the cloakroom once I’ve arrived. It’s all about practicality. I need to be able to take off my jacket and put on my chef jacket quickly; it’s part of the fast pace of being a restaurateur. Speed is essential. I like to be neutral when I work with food. Food is colourful and vibrant so you don’t want to be distracted by wearing stripes. For me it’s all about being peaceful. While I wear a lot of Prada and Marc Jacobs, for casual occasions I also like Zadig & Voltaire.
Bracelet by Power Balance
I started wearing it about eight months ago. I put it on in the morning and I feel like I have more energy and am less tired. I really only wear a watch on the weekends. I wash my hands 30 to 40 times a day so I always have water everywhere getting into everything. No matter how waterproof my watch is, it inevitably destroyed after all that exposure to moisture.
Shoes by Prada
I’m on my feet 16 hours a day and Prada makes the best shoes for standing up in. I’ve been wearing Prada shoes for 25 years now. They’re super comfortable.