The Moroccan and international Showbiz renowned star, Simo Benbachir, hosted in his latest episode of ‘Nayda F’Hollywood’, which is aired on le 360, Chef Abdessamad Benameur who goes by “Chef Ben”, and who immigrated to the United States from Kenitra where he used to play Basketball. He is today the partner of the international actor Ryan Gosling, in the most famous Moroccan restaurant in Los Angeles.
Abdessamad reached the United States in 1987 at the age of 32. He, like a lot of Moroccans, came to the U.S. seeking knowledge. However, his financial status didn’t allow him to pursue an academic career and pushed him to work in different professions, one of which is cooking.
Abdessamad used to host a lot of Americans and foreigners in his house, who didn’t miss a chance to compliment his cooking skills. The same people encouraged him later on to try his recipes in restaurants so that other people could have access to enjoying them. This was indeed what he decided to do, when he started working international Italian and Indian restaurants, before he started his own café named ‘Café Paris’, which was famous for the delicious coffee that he made himself.
After few years, Abdessamad switched to the field of event planning along with a friend of his. His business was flourishing that he was able to organize a party for the famous star Ryan Gosling, who liked his cooking. Ryan asked Abdessamad about the address to his restaurant when the latter informed him that he doesn’t own one. And that’s when Ryan suggested for them to co-own a restaurant, which they named “Tagine”.
Chef Ben uses unique recipes and measures to his dishes, and this makes his chefs-d’oeuvre different from other cooks’. He is currently writing a book about his life and story with cooking. He mentioned that he donates some of his income to Moroccan NGOs.
As for himself, he is very proud of what he has achieved so far. As he mentioned to Simo: “ I was an outstanding Basketball Player in Kenitra, I toured Moroccan and many European countries; however, my dream has always been to immigrate to the United States because I was familiar with the American lifestyle thanks to the fact the an American Military base was right next to where I grew up. Today, I can say that I have fulfilled my dream, and that I’m thrilled whenever Americans try our Moroccan food and think of coming back, again.”