Success building: it is a story of trial and error. In their book Microfactories – Move aside Mr. Ford join the Antwerp designers Jon and Masa Kleinhample all kinds of stories that inspire them, including that of chef Kobe Asparagus.
The Antwerp-based designer duo who have won Jon and Masa Kleinhample cherish a warm love for traditional craftsmanship, natural materials and social contact. All of those passions together, most recently in the book Microfactories – Move aside Mr. Ford, which Kobe Asparagus tells us about how he came to where he is today.
Kobe of Asparagus we know today as a successful chef of the former In The Wulf and owner of Ghent beacons for meerwaardezoekers The Supermarket and The Display case, but he also started as a young chef. He learned the tricks of the trade in Oud Sluis, Sergio Herman, who is “me in the direction of, and an older brother to me.”
“I’m chaotic. I have no structure. I suck at it.”
Although his former restaurant in Dranouter, In The Wulf after two years with a Michelin star could show off, was Kobe Asparagus when not a happy man. “There was absolutely no mental challenge in what I did. I used a pattern that is not mine.” Over time, however, he developed his own voice, a cuisine du terroir. He wants to both craft as new technologies to implement, he wants to communicate with the neighbors and with the rest of the world. He shares a penchant for local products and craft process. He opts for organic that is no longer perpendicular to an industrial state, but there is a marriage contract.
Today is Wulf not more. “My story was told,” he says in Microfactories. “I enjoyed it not so hard. I have the perfect structure created in De Wulf, and then I was tired.” The michelin starred restaurant closed the doors, Asparagus is there like never before. He runs all of two cases in Gent and there will be a third project in that city. How the man all bolwerkt? That turns out to be a question to which he himself is the answer also to blame, because in Microfactories he admits that he is one of the hardest challenges in life: “I am chaotic. I have no structure. I suck at it.”
Not only western and eastern philosophy, but also for those who regularly with self-doubt, is the story of Asparagus a boost. “I am afraid to make wrong decisions to make. I make that always impulsive, and know that sometimes things can go wrong. That’s just part of the game.”
Except Kobe of Asparagus are also other interesting Belgian entrepreneurs such as Brussels Beer Project, Sarah Lemke, and Rizon Parein discussed in the book. Jon and Masa Kleinhample went also across borders looking for passionate talent. That search brought to the United States. Ready to get inspired by their stories? ‘Microfactories (Move aside Mr. Ford)’ is located in the better (online) bookshop and costs 45 euro.