Chef Xavier Souvignet’s culinary roots stretches back to his childhood and his birthplace of Ardèche, France – a rustic region surrounded by vast vineyards and home of many culinary specialities of southern France. His countless memorable summers spent with his grandmother, an outstanding cook with her own hotel restaurant, formed the foundation of his passion in cooking.
After years of working as a mechanical technician, Xavier embraced what had always been in his veins and joined the three generations of cooks that came before him. He attended the renowned French culinary school Institut Paul Bocuse in Écully, Lyon where he spent three years studying the art of cooking and restaurant management.
He gained invaluable professional experience from several prestigious French hotel restaurants including SOFITEL Vieux Port in Marseille and LA PYRAMIDE Relais & Châteaux hotel in Vienne.
Eager to expand and perfect his culinary skills internationally, Xavier travelled to Malaysia where he was offered the coveted position of Executive Chef at the Embassy of France in Malaysia for 10 years. As an ambassador for French cuisine and culinary skills, Xavier served heads of states, government ministers, and celebrities from various countries.
It was in Malaysia that Xavier met his wife Hui Ling, who also shared a passion for cooking, especially local Chinese and Malay food. Drawing on newfound culinary experiences, knowledge, and skills, he explored different ways to cook. Combining international flavours gave him opportunities to serve top-notch classic French cuisine, while featuring innovative dishes that highlighted the varied culinary traditions of Southeast Asia.
After ten years of managing countless official lunches, dinners, banquets, and cocktails, Xavier decided moved to Canada with his family, but not without concluding his tenure at the French embassy with a crowning achievement – a dinner for the former (then serving) French President Francois Hollande.
Xavier’s expertise and ingenuity has been recognized and appreciated, earning him invitations to be a culinary consultant for several restaurants and international events. His has been featured in the Malaysian magazine “The Connoisseurs” (2012), and he has consulted and catered for Halo Creative & Design’s annual “At Home Show” (2014), a large-scale week-long event in China.
Today, as the proud owner and chef at The Grizzly Grub in the Okanagan Valley, Xavier strives to bring lovingly crafted gourmet meals from his kitchen to your table.