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Greece's best culinary ambassador named in Belgium

The son of a refugee family, chef and owner of Notos Constantin Erinkoglou is all about simplicity and authenticity

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Constantin Erinkoglou Photo: Le Vif Weekend

30 August 2017

Constantin Erinkoglou has been bestowed the title of Best Ambassador of Greek Cuisine in Belgium.

The owner of Notos in Brussels, the 20 year institution is all about simplicity and authenticity using inspiration from his handed down family recipes and regular trips to Greece.

"We take pride in serving tasty, delicate and genuine traditional Greek dishes," Erinkoglou said.

"I want my guests to discover the Greek products that I love and of which I have fond memories. I pour all my energy in finding and preparing the right ingredients. I also called upon the help of my family and picked up recipes from my mother and from my grandmother."

From a refugee family, the chef was raised in Kavala and relocated to France at the age of 18 to study sociology.

A scholarship took him to Belgium, where he started working at the European Commission department in Brussels. It was there that he oddly enough started to discover his passion for food. Unable to find a geniune Greek restaurant in the capital, he would cook his mother's recipes and share them with his colleagues.

Eight years later, a move to France would see him pursue a career in food.

"I went to Lyon to become a farmer. I don't know why. It just happened. I began learning how to cultivate and found good producers, and ended up cooking," he told Kathimerini.

"Then, in 1996, I launched Notos and everything started happening really fast. The restaurant had gained a reputation within a month."

The title of Ambassador of Greek cuisine is one in a long line of accolades awarded to the chef, which includes a Bib Gourmands and he was made a Knight of the Order of Leopold II for his contribution to gastronomy in Brussels.

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