At 18 years old, Isabelle left the tiny village in the champagne region where she was born with a Baccalauréat in languages, literature and philosophy to start her career, first in Paris, then London where she studied at the British Academy of Graphology to qualify as a graphologist in 1993.
It was also in London that she had the opportunity to work in some of the most innovative kitchens and with their chefs, namely Frith’s restaurant with Carla Tomasi and Madalena Bonino, and St John’s Fergus Henderson. These amazing experiences started to shape her skills and especially the creativity for which she is now known.
After a two year voyage of personal discovery through Asia and Africa, Isabelle returned to her French roots to open La Guingette, a locally beloved restaurant in the small village of Argens in the Minervois.
After running this successful business, Isabelle’s journey would then take her to the Côte d’Azur where she developed a successful home catering collaboration with Lori Mazziotta in Chateauneuf de Grasse.
Isabelle specialises in vegetarian, vegan, raw food and gluten-free creations, using only local and organic food sources. The roots of her inspiration, her many travels and experiences, make Isabelle’s dishes unique and creative.
Isabelle pursued her study of medicinal and edible plants at Saint Vincent d’Olargues with Francoise Phillidet, herbalist from the Ecole Lyonnaise de Plantes Medicinales, and also studied nutrition and detoxification techniques with juices and raw food at the Optimum Health Institute in Austin, Texas.
She maintains and regularly uses ingredients from her own garden, where she practices permaculture and sustainable food production. Inspired by her immense passion for plants and alternative medicine, Isabelle creates exquisite dishes that feed body and soul.
Her next journey will be continuing her education at the famous Hippocrates Health Center in Florida in pursuit of a deeper understanding of the relationship between food, nature and health.
Permaculture as a way of life
"Wealth is a deep understanding of the natural world."
Permaculture is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive systems which have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems. It is the harmonious integration of the landscape with people providing their food, energy, shelter and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way.
The 3 principles of permaculture:
Care for the earth :
Rebuild natural capital
The Earth is a living, breathing entity. It must be provided for all life systems to continue and multiply by returning waste back into the system to recycle into usefulness. This is the first principle, because without a healthy earth, humans cannot flourish.
Care for people :
Look after self, family and community
If people’s needs are met in compassionate and simple ways, the environment surrounding them will prosper.
Fair share :
Set limits and redistribute surplus
Each of us should take no more than what we need before we reinvest the surplus. We are provided with times of abundance which enable us to share with others.
"Permaculture is a philosophy of working with, rather than against nature: It is a thoughtful observation rather than a thoughtless labour. It is looking at plants and animals in all their functions, rather than treating any area as a single-product system."
"Though the problems of the world are increasingly complex, the solutions remain embarrassingly simple."
"When we work with nature instead of trying to impose our will, the solution is often found within the problem."
"Permaculture gives us a toolkit for moving from a culture of fear and scarcity to one of love and abundance"