The story of the „Inima” restaurant in France, founded by a Moldovan woman, which won over Michelin experts

In the southwest of France, in Bordeaux, a city crossed by the Garonne river, a small restaurant that is delighting French customers and more has been included in the famous Michelin catalog. It’s the “project” of the heart of Moldovan Oxana Cretu, originally from Cahul. After the successful nomination, Realitatea press group correspondent Traian Stoianov talked with Oxana to find out more about the „Inima” restaurant run and founded by our Moldovan.

My restaurant is my home!

Oxana says that opening a restaurant in France was neither a plan nor a dream, but the “project” eventually is completed. Before becoming a chef and even having her team, she worked for many years to accumulate all the necessary experience, although initially, all thoughts turned to applied arts.

“My restaurant is my home. There, I have created a universe. A place, where I want to feel comfortable and the same is true for my team. That not only puts me to say financial investment, but also soul investment, intellectual investment so that we can create an easy place to work, a pleasant place, where everyone feels good through an energy that accumulates over the years. When I bought it, it was a simple grocery store. Together with my brother, we made a few transformations until we ended up with ‘Inima,’ the name of the restaurant. In my team, there are four people, and the fifth is me. We have a sommelier who guides the guests suggests French wines and wines from the Republic of Moldova,” says the Moldovan.


The Moldovan woman admits that some do schools for 15-20 years, for 30 years, and after that they still don’t manage to get there or at least to integrate into the process, but in her case it was different.

“With me, things happened faster, more quickly. Of course, I admired or took an interest, inspired by several French bosses, and not only that, but I didn’t have a mentor per se to pass something on to me. I had to do a lot on my own. I learned a lot. I specialised professionally if I can put it that way, with Alain Ducasse. I went to some courses that took place in a very small space, let’s say, it was like a small apartment in Paris,” says Oxana Cretu.

The Moldovan was honest and also told what she would like to change in the Republic of Moldova if she had the opportunity, namely in gastronomy.

See how she answered in the interview below.

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