Erwan Heussaff: Restaurateur Extraordinaire | Spotlight

“Erwan who?” asked an ignorant voice in my head the first time I heard of him. It’s Erwan Heussaff, I found out, feeling like a complete dud. And if you’re as much of an ignoramus as me when it comes to ridiculously famous people, let me tell you a little bit about Erwan, the man who cooked for me – I mean, for all of us who came to the dinner he hosted.

Philips asked Erwan to cook for 15 guests – yours truly included – to highlight the healthy and energy-saving features of their Home Living appliance line. Serving and cooking on the spot a five-course meal, Erwan also answered questions while juggling pans, pots, mashed squash, and just about everything there is to juggle while cooking for 15 guests.

Erwan Heussaff

No, he’s not just another pretty face. Erwan Heussaff took a hospitality & business management course in Paris-based Centre Management Hotelier (CMH) International Hospitality Management School. The founder of The Mothership F&B Group, he also takes care of the restaurant operations and creative growth of seven different establishments, one of which is The Red Light, which happens to be his.


Erwan Heussaff: The man behind the apron

I kept wondering why everyone was sweating – there was no air-conditioning and it was sweltering inside – while he literally kept his cool. Was there a drop of sweat on his handsome face? Nooo.

I asked him a few questions and he answered graciously. Here’s what went down.

Should Doctors Dress to Please Their Patients?

“Perhaps the speaker refused to answer your question because you’re young.”

My jaw dropped when the product manager offered that explanation. We were in a symposium and the European speaker her company invited had just answered my question in a vague, roundabout way. When I asked the product manager why the speaker behaved the way he did, I never expected her to answer the way she did!

I thought at first, maybe the speaker didn’t know the answer. However, a few minutes after I asked my question, another doctor – this time, an older male – repeated my query.

Surprise, surprise: The speaker was more than happy to answer in detail.

I bristled in my seat. Any other day, I would have smiled at the thought of being called young. But that day, I didn’t appreciate the apologist way the speaker’s behavior was rationalized by the product manager. After all, I will be forty in a few years, making me about a decade older than most of the doctors in the room.

I wondered, did the foreign doctor shrug me off because I was the only female who dared to speak? Or was there another reason?

Half-convinced that he was a chauvinist, I believed there was nothing I could have done to make him treat me differently. Then again, fate had a way of proving me wrong when I least expected it.

The very next day, I attended a post-graduate conference that gave me the epiphany of a lifetime: That exasperating man might have treated me the same way he did the other doctors… if only I wore a different outfit.

Dressing the Part: How a Doctor’s Attire Affects the Patient

Wait, what? That’s ridiculous, you might think. Did what I had to wear (which was appropriate – you can take my word for it) influence the speaker more than what I had to say?

The simple answer is yes.

Manila Doctors Hospital post grad course“[…] Judgments about the cover are good proxies for judgments about the book – even after reading it,” said Dr. Geraldine Racaza, quoting a psychologist from Cornell University.

Dr Racaza talked about how doctors could dress to impress, addressing the Internal Medicine residents of Manila Doctors Hospital during the second day of the post-graduate course held at Diamond Hotel from June 18 to 19, 2015.

Here’s how doctors can dress to impress. Whether you like fashion or not, it doesn’t matter – using your daily attire to improve your relationship with your patients is simply smart thinking.

Cerebellar Hypoplasia in Cats: Makisig’s Story

Would you adopt a cat with cerebellar hypoplasia?

If you answer no, I understand. Hearing the words cerebellar hypoplasia for the first time can be very intimidating. However, that didn’t deter Anna Sumayod, the proud fur-mom of Makisig. Makisig has cerebellar hypoplasia, a condition that affects how he moves about.

cerebellar hypoplasia

“Maki came to us last April 7, 2014. We really thought he [would] die – actually, he looked dead when we saw him,” Anna shared with me how she found Makisig, whom she and her partner rescued.

“He and his 3 siblings were left hanging from [the spokes of our] gate.” Anna heard them meowing at two in the morning.

“He was breathing but he was definitely having a hard time. He looked like he was struggling for every breath.”

Conquering fear

The first time she saw Makisig and his siblings hanging from their gate, there were thin wire nooses around their necks. She suspected that whoever left them there had attempted to kill them.

Sadly, attempts to harm differently-abled animals are nothing new. While some do it out of pity (“He will just suffer if we let him live!”), others do it out of fear (“Do I have what it takes to care for him?”).


“I didn’t have second thoughts [about adopting Makisig and his siblings] but I was really scared,” Anna confessed. “All newborns… still unweaned!”

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