Describe yourself, your background and what you do today. How has where you come from shaped who you are?
I’m a third generation Italo-Belgian, happily married with four boys. I’ve been working mostly in retail for the last 25 years, and work as a sales manager of an IT company today. I like to think that I shaped myself, especially since I don’t have a high school certificate.
How would you describe your attitude to work?
Motivated and positive; a playmaker and networker.
On a personal note, what would you say you’re the proudest of?
My family and basketball background.
To you, what is a Ketje?
A cool guy from Brussels.
What do you think distinguishes Belgium, and its people, from the rest?
Our different linguistic communities, our hospitality, and Belgian fries – because “French fries” is incorrect.
If you had to nominate three people that, to you, best symbolised Belgium in its full glory, who would they be and why?
Stromae, a renowned and incredible singer and composer. King Baudouin, the unifier of Belgium. Manneken Pis, a veritable Belgian icon even if he didn’t really exist!
If you had to take out-of-towners to one essential restaurant in Belgium, which one would it be?
Le Schievelavabo or another similar, typical Belgian brasserie.
If you had to take visiting guests out on a Sunday tourist trail, where would you take them and why?
The Villers Abbey and forest in Villers-la-Ville, a truly calming place.
Sauces, in Belgium at least, are intrinsically linked to French fries. What’s your combination of choice?
I don’t understand what you mean by French fries! Perhaps you mean to say our famous Belgian fries, in which case my preference is a mix spicy and sweet sauces. I usually go for samouraï and Brussels Ketjep’s Cowboy – utterly incredible.
Tell us about the first time you discovered BK sauces.
The Ketjep, through a very good friend of mine. We all eat our croque monsieurs with ketchup in my home, and BK’s Ketjep has now become our number one tomato sauce.
Can you recollect your best Belgian joke ever?
How do you identify a Belgian in a submarine? He’s the only with a parachute.
Why do Belgians do it better?
This expression dates back to the 80s, the original being “Italians do it better.” Belgian knowhow is copyrighted – and no one should ever mess with this!