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Here you will find excerpts from some of the interviews that my co-author and I gave to magazines and newspapers after the publication of The Loving Chef. (This section will be updated soon to include more interviews.)

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Sphere on Spiral Stairs

Film Noir magazine
Interview to Costas G. Karderinis

There is something bohemian in this book. Is it because of Thessaloniki?


Indeed, this city appeals to something bohemian in us. We were born and raised here, and we are both marked by a characteristic bohemian tendency, though in a refined and tasteful version, I hope.

How can a novel be written by two authors? Is friendship a requirement?


The success of a common project depends on whether one’s creativity is complementary to that of the other. In our case this worked very well, since one of us is a great connoisseur of food and the other an obsessive pleasure-seeker. Every Sunday we would get together to try out the recipes and to talk about the erotic women of Thessaloniki destined to fall in love with our charismatic hero. Like the witches of Eastwick in that old movie we decided upon our hero’s attributes. He would be the best chef in the world and the best lover in the world, but above all an artist: someone who thinks of each woman as a work of art – which is true by the way.

Is the art of cooking Epicurean, in the sense of indulgence in luxury?


The highest tasting moment in the book is the story of a snobbish young lady who is an art critic. The hero wants to teach her a lesson and transforms her to his… maid for one day. They agree to play a strange erotic game during which she is made to clean his country house, then he blindfolds her and feeds her a perfectly plain Spanish meal, based on… leftovers. The snobbish lady will soon find out that there is nothing more grand than stale bread crusts fried in olive oil where country sausage has been cooked!

Cooking does not need any extravagance. Certainly, those who are devoted to it will always experiment with new tastes – but they do not complicate them unnecessarily.

Our senses never lie, you say. What is it then that tricks us to delude ourselves?


The thing that misleads us is our own narrative. Each one of us narrates our life events in a different way. When our narrative no longer works for us, we should change it.


The servants of pleasure are naked. What about the conspirators of pleasure?  


The conspirators of pleasure observe their own nakedness. Writing a book is a good way to observe oneself. And – ideally – reading a book makes us wiser.

In our era of digital sexuality, could it be that you are too romantic?


We are both truly romantic, not stupidly romantic. A friend, who is no longer with us, used to say, ‘true romantics bring flowers when they visit a brothel.’


If you could insert a recent film in the book, which one would it be?  


Nymphomaniac. We would show Lars von Trier and his frigid female protagonists only one thing: how to make Cretan stakovoutiro. This unique butter is made through the processing of tsipa, which is sheep and goat milk. But in Greek, tsipa also means shame, and shame is the main ingredient of human sexuality.  

Interview to ​Efi Douli
Meteora Newspaper

The Loving Chef is a novel consisting of interconnected stories. In its pages poetry meets philosophy, music mingles with literature and theatre, while in the background we have culinary adventures and ethnic cuisine with sixty unique recipes. Would you like to tell us a few things about the story behind the book?

D.V.: Two years ago, I got together with my good friend, Panagiotis Koukouvitis, for a drink. We started talking about the ways in which we all ‘feed’, emotionally, intellectually, and erotically, during our life, and how this is usually also connected to the way we eat literally. We decided then to write a book together, combining his knowledge of the art of cooking and my knowledge of the art of pleasure.

The stories take place in Thessaloniki, your birthplace, a beautiful city with rich history, and an important presence in world tastes. What was the thing that made you choose this city for your setting?

P.K.: We believe that writers can handle better things that they know. What’s more, the people of our city are very interested in the good quality of their life, and not so much in material wealth, which does not always guarantee a good life. An erotic culinary novel seemed to be very suitable to our city’s vibes.

What was your motivation for writing a book in which the art of cooking would be the main theme?

P.K.: Greece has a long tradition in cooking – and this is not a coincidence. Our ancestors liked to eat and drink well, but they were also erotic people, virtuosos in the art of pleasure. Even in our days, the average Greek will tend to enjoy life more deeply than the average person in Northern Europe. We hope that our book, which is already being translated, will come out in other European countries too, bringing this message from Greece. Our proposal to the rest of the world is to learn how to enjoy quality food, cooked with love and passion. Let’s begin with cooking and the rest will follow.

How much of you and how much of Panagiotis is part of the main hero and the women of his life who inspire him?

D.V.: I have experienced emotional and erotic hang ups like those of the book’s heroines, as I believe many women nowadays have. Take for example the transformation of woman to a commodity. This does not allow women to enjoy their love life on an equal basis with men.
Panagiotis was in part the inspiration for the main hero, as he is a gourmet and an artist.
In all, the stories of the book are fictitious.

Do you think that in our era literature is important for a Greek?

D.V.: It is important for everyone in the western world, where we are all Greeks.

What are your hopes and dreams for the future?

P.K.: We hope that Greece will find its inspiration again and will be able to bring forth the best elements of this land of light and the people who inhabit it. Then perhaps we will be able to enrich the world again with that which we possess in abundance.

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