New video: 'Although every day I think it's not good enough, every day I try to push a little bit more'

The  Staff Canteen

Sidney Schutte is the executive chef of two Michelin-starred restaurant Spectrum at The Waldorf Astoria in Amsterdam.

Sidney began his career as a chef aged sixteen. 

"I was a really lousy school student," he said, however he took a shine to the kitchen. Two years later, the young Sidney went to Belgium, where he worked in multiple prestigious establishments, including three-starred De Librije in Zwolle under Jonnie Boer's tutelage.

He then spent four years working in Hong Kong to be a sous chef under Richard Ekkebus at Restaurant Amber, followed by a stint at The Landmark Mandarin Hotel, before taking on a position at Librije Zusje at The Waldorf, for which he and the team earned two Michelin stars. 

"It was a big thing, it was really special," he said.  

Five years later, sensing that their creative differences were becoming too vast to continue, advisors Jonnie and Thérèse Boer removed themselves from the equation and handed the reigns to Sidney.

The restaurant was given a revamp, as well as its current name: Spectrum. 

"It's a little bit more of an international name, and a little bit easier to pronounce for the foreign guests," he explained.

Rhubarb, blue cheese, dill, runner beans, mustard seeds

Influences and style 

Sidney feels he has been influenced by many chefs in the course of his career, including Roger Souvereyns, who he calls "a great chef with his own signature style," much like his other mentor, Jonnie Boer. 

When it comes to cuisine, the chef admits to always having had a soft spot for Asian food, a love he developped during his time in Hong Kong. 

Pure chocolate 'Bros', Lovage ice cream, mulberry, jerusalem artichoke, black truffle

Spectrum 

The small restaurant serves only 36 guests per service - with 9 people working the front of house, and 15 kitchen staff. 

"It's great to have such focus and detail on such a small amount of guests," he said. 

Asked how he views success, he explained. 

"It's a difficult question because I come from the seaside and they are very sober people. The only things we want are to cook and to have a full restaurant. 

"I'm always in doubt: 'is it good enough, is it good enough.' I see it as a positive thing, although every day I think it's not good enough, every day I try to push a little bit more.' 

Inside Spectrum

Photo credit: Chantal Arnts 

In these challenging times…

The Staff Canteen team are taking a different approach to keeping our website independent and delivering content free from commercial influence. Our Editorial team have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience in a balanced way. We would never put up a paywall and restrict access – The Staff Canteen is open to all and we want to keep bringing you the content you want; more from younger chefs, more on mental health, more tips and industry knowledge, more recipes and more videos. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector - we want to do more for you.

A single coffee is more than £2, a beer is £4.50 and a large glass of wine can be £6 or more.

Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you.

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 7th July 2020

New video: 'Although every day I think it's not good enough, every day I try to push a little bit more'