Hawaii by Roland Trettl
Roland Trettl in an interview about Hawaii
14 March 2019
Eckhart Witzigmann only trusted one person to do it: Roland Trettl. And he was right: for ten years, the top chef from South Tyrol was the figurehead of Salzburg's Ikarus restaurant in Hangar-7, where he cooked with over 100 guest chefs from all over the world.
Back then, this one job offer for a chef in Salzburg was both the most sought-after and the most feared in professional circles: the search was on for an executive chef who would finally put the vision of the guest concept into practice with other chefs.
Professionally and technically, Roland Trettl was beyond reproach. Today we also know that Roland Trettl made the guest chef concept and thus Restaurant Ikarus known throughout the world. One characteristic of his certainly played an important role in this: he rarely does what is expected of him...
And by the way, he is also called the "George Clooney" of the cooking world. If that's not a flattering distinction.
"To learn, you do have to think outside the box and taste your way around the world. "Roland Trettl
Questions for Roland Trettl
How do you start your day?
The day starts a little earlier for me now and I try to go running at least 4 times a week in the morning, always a distance of about 10 kilometers. Afterwards, I start my workday in the kitchen.
The biggest challenge in the kitchen?
The biggest challenge should always be to make the guests happy. This should be the case not only in the kitchen but in gastronomy in general. That's all there is to it.
You're considered a Hangar 7 legend, what memories do you have of your time at Ikarus?
I still live near Austria, in Bad Reichenhall. I'm also very often on the road in Salzburg and in Austria in general. My eleven years at Ikarus were incredibly intense and formative. Apart from the high stress factor, I met the most amazing people, new cultures and the best chefs in the world there. Without my work there, this would never have been possible to this extent. This work has had a very positive influence on my outlook on life.
You know them all - from the best chefs in the world like Joan Roca or René Redzepi to the three-star chefs of the gourmet capital of the world Paris to the avant-garde chefs of Australia, the USA or Japan. Are you going to visit them?
If I have the time: Yes. Austrian cuisine has a priceless variety and refinement, a talent for turning very little into something extraordinary. But in order to learn, you have to think outside the box and taste your way around the world.
Then where are you spending your vacation?
Definitely Hawaii. They have a top product, are insanely laid back, the climate is perfect and there is no crime there. Since I'm in so many hotels all year for business, I always rent a private home when on vacation. I don't want to be restricted on vacation. And assuming I want to eat breakfast naked at 5pm, I want to be able to do that....
What are your hotspots in Hawaii?
Haha, for sure: The Food & Wine Festival on O'ahu. That's usually in early November with over a hundred local chefs and dozens of booths with regional products.
"The biggest challenge should always be to make the guests happy. " Roland Trettl
The best restaurants
Alan Wong's Restaurant