Fascinated with nature, its fruit and our own cultural heritage, Alexandru Dumitru is one of the young chefs that are shaping modern Romanian gastronomy. His talent, as well as his quest for the perfect ingredients and orientation towards quality produce have won him two Gault&Millau awards – one, in 2018, for his collaboration with local producers, and the 2019 Chef of the Year distinction. Alexandru is head chef of the Bucharest-based Bistro Ateneu, a restaurant committed to the farm-to-table philosophy.

“When you break it down into specific attributes, positive psychology is, actually, an accumulation of traits and factors that influence your outlook on life and which determine how you react to certain situations and opportunities. As a chef, the way I relate to individuals is vital – I need to know the circuit of each ingredient that passes through my kitchen, I need to trust the ones that provide it and I need to connect to local values and beliefs, by engaging with people all over the country. This means that, from thought to matter, each dish is an exercise, a mix of experiences and stories which will put a SMILE on your face, while delivering a valuable lesson.”