I left London and my job as chef to Elton John and opened a Michelin star restaurant in Caracas named Patrick, that I ran for ten years during the 80s,
Many of the rich and famous passed through its doors. I greet first lady of France in above pic

Why customer not always right?

Of all the celebrities that visited Patrick one in particular was the infamous Pablo Escobar.
I remember him referring to me as “Patricito”, an affectionate, diminutive term for my name, and asking me “if anyone was bothering me”
He wanted arepitas, a type of street food made from ground maize dough and not quite the level of cuisine that we were serving!
Although,why customer is always right, I had to inform him that no, we did not make arepitas, sorry!

Down to the river-Another memorable visit;

One evening when the restaurant was filled with the usual glitterati, a little group of shabbily clad minstrels ambled in and asked if they could strike up a tune. Although hesitant, I agreed to only one song.

It turns out that it was the young River Phoenix and his family.

In 1973, the family joined a religious cult named the Children of God. The family had settled in Caracas Venezuela where the Children of God had stationed them to work as missionaries and fruit gatherers. Although Phoenix rarely talked about the cult, he was quoted in an Esquire article as having said “They’re disgusting, they’re ruining people’s lives.

What to do when you get out of prison:

While driving through a small village named Baruta on the outskirts of Caracas, I came across a tiny tavern, Mi vaca y yo (my cow and I)
I entered and struck up a conversation with the owner who turned out to have bought the bar from non other than Henri
the famous Papillon who settled in Venezuela after being one of the few men in history to successfully  escape from the notorious  prison “Isle de Diable” in French Guiana. The bar owner knew Charrière well.
After many fascinating accounts, I had no need to read the best-selling book Papillon.  








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