What are your earliest memories of being interested in food?

I have always loved the idea of food as a beautiful thing that nurtures us as humans and gives life.The concept of food as a somewhat primal instinct that at the same time canbe joyful, social and delicious is not only beautiful, but is in my opinion unique.

 

What would you say has inspired your cooking the most?

I get inspired by produce. It can be a very straight forward approach, wanting to transform aningredient into its purest and most delicious form or it can be more conceptual in nature – butalways with produce and taste as the driving forces.

 

Describe how you see your own culinary style and how it has evolved over the years…

The food that we cook at Maaemo is rooted in nature, culture and heritage. We cook food thatreflects who we are and where we are, with inspirations from the past as well as a sense ofinnovation. Over the years our cooking has become more confident and we trust in our identitymore each day.

 

What kind of experience do you aim to give guests at the restaurant and other collaborativeevents that you’ve done?

Whenever we travel it’s for multiple reasons. We do so to absorb the food culture of other regionsand reflect on how they compare to our own culture. It’s part of a learning process. We of coursealso try to share our own thoughts and ideas and bring a part of Maaemo and Norway out into theworld.

 

What would you say has been the most memorable moment in your culinary career sofar?

The opening of Maaemo.

 

How is your now 3michelin star restaurant, Maaemo, doing and what’s next for you?

Everyday we go deeper into our own identity and shape Maaemo. We are stillprogressing and the idea of Maaemo is being honed everyday.

 

What advice would you give your younger self, starting out a career in the world of food?

Dare more.

 

Find out more information about Esben and Maaemo here |maaemo.no/