Careers path of alumni: Jean-François MALLET "I am a kind of free electron in the world of gastronomy"


    Jean-François Mallet has lived it all, or almost. Photographer, chef, author, culinary stylist, he has travelled around the world 4 times and is inspired every day by his experiences. 
    His passion has followed him since his earliest childhood, where he bathes between photography and cooking, from his father and grandmother respectively. For his professional career he doesn't bother to make a choice and decides to do both, or rather: "the link between cooking and image". 
    To do this he began by entering the hotel school of Montargis. Wishing to return to more general studies, he enrols in the FERRANDI Paris preparatory class, which provides courses for students already in possession of a CAP or BEP who wish to take their BAC as a free candidate. At the same time, a refresher class for students who have already obtained this diploma teaches accelerated cooking.

    At the end of the year, students from both classes take the competitive examination to enter the Higher School of Cooking. They are one of only 4 to pass. During his studies he has the chance to do one of these internships at the restaurant Jamin, Joël Robuchon's great 3-star restaurant "We would arrive at 7am and leave at 1am. It was hard because there was a great demand for work". He graduated at the top of his class.  
    He did his military service in 1991 and found an executive position as soon as he left. He worked for the Accor Wagonlit group and became executive chef at the Montparnasse railway station where he was given responsibility for 5 restaurants. He then joined the Lenôtre group, which sent him to open the table of the governor, the Elysée Lenôtre, as associate director. "I accepted this job because I needed to understand the company". 

    Two years later he decided to go into what he had always wanted to do, linking cooking and photography and became a stylist. 

    He set up his own business for 2 years and then finally opened his own photo studio and culinary advice.  There he creates both the recipes and the images that go with them. 
    Pioneer of street cooking reports, he is inspired by "the cuisine of others, the cuisine of the world, the cuisine of everyday life". He participated in the production of about a hundred books on gastronomy and travel, and even launched the Simplissime collection of books. This collection is now translated into 20 languages and is the best-selling collection in the world. "This book was addressed to all those who dreamed of cooking and didn't dare to take the plunge". 
    "Never do the same thing", that is Jean-François Mallet's strength. "I have found my balance.  I'm blossoming because I do artistic work that is linked to the image and to cooking". He still has plans to continue inventing new systems to allow people to discover the kitchen. 
    A former president of the alumni before François Pasteau, Jean-François Mallet has kept links with his school. He has given courses, made interventions and is ready to come back at the slightest phone call. "I owe everything to this school, and I must be able to repay it in some way. School is in my daily thoughts". The advice he would give to his students? "You don't become a chef or a great cook overnight just because you've been to school. You have to be humble in front of the pan. School is the beginning".

    FERRANDI Paris : 

    • In 3 words: Quality, Professionalism, Passage more than recommended to make a good career in the restaurant business.
    • Plate : A hare à la royale, because "it is a hyper technical dish with prestigious products and a demanding know-how".