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East End Cellars Norwood


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A talk with Mathieu Smeysters

Hospitality is about providing our clientele with an experience that reaches further than mere nutrition to a disconnect from their daily lives, a moment in time when they can let go of their daily worries, be greeted with a smile and be provided with the same level of service one would provide to their best friends and family. Our focus is always on the guest, from the wines we offer to the quality of the food that we cook, the staff that look after them, and the music that we play.
What qualities do you value most in another person?
If I approach this question from a work perspective it would have to be passion above all, followed by perseverance, ambition, perfectionism, and loyalty. The people closest to me, with whom I formed a valuable, ongoing relationship with tend to have these qualities in common.
What are your sources of inspiration?
The incredibly passionate and hardworking people I have had the chance to work with throughout my career. From my first steps in the hospitality industry at the age of 15 to the people I get to work with on a daily basis.
What was the most memorable meal you either cooked or ate?
I had the chance of dining with my dad at Faviken in Sweden almost 8 years ago. It was a surreal experience. Two flights out of Belgium to a tiny one-landing strip local airport followed by a 1-hour rental car drive got us to a remote farmhouse in the middle of nowhere. It was a magical experience from the moment we were greeted at the door to the moment we drove away the following day. It unfortunately closed in the meantime but I am still waiting for Chef Magnus Nilsson to open a new restaurant one day. If he does, I will be the first one to book.
Where are you when you feel the happiest?
When I am enjoying a meal somewhere. No real preference regarding casual or fine dining but rather a moment in time in which I get to eat great food with the people I love. My passion for food is unequaled by anything else, but wine takes a close second alongside my love of endurance sports. An unexpected combination.
If you could prepare a dinner for any four guests who would they be?
I would love an opportunity to cook for and dine with Barack Obama, Anthony Bourdain, Elton John, and Tom Brady. These are all inspirational people that have achieved everlasting success in their respective fields, or have had a global impact on the world. Anthony Bourdain is the reason I got into the hospitality industry. I used to watch his show on National Geographic when I was in my late teens.
When is your favourite time to enjoy Krug?
My partner shares my appreciation for Krug and together we enjoy a bottle a few times a year as a way to take a moment amongst the craziness that we both experience work wise. I have also adopted a tradition with my friends of opening a bottle of Krug Rose on Christmas Day and sending each other a picture of us enjoying it with our loved ones.
Why do you love Krug?
Krug is the epitome of refinement and luxury, but it does so without pretenses. It is always a special moment, a transcendental experience.


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Krug Grande Cuvée
Krug Grande Cuvée
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