During her studies at the UvA, Irene enjoyed cooking for friends,family and fellow students. She was asked to fill in the kitchen at restaurant Wilhelminadok and she liked it so much that she decided-after obtaining her master's degree- to focus entirely on cooking. She worked, among others, at Firma Spijkervet, Le Garage, Firma Pekelhaaring and Ottolenghi in London.
She also took the patisserie course at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and the wineologist course at the Wine Academy.Meanwhile, she set up her own catering company La Vicina and also worked at Fromagerie Kef, to expand her knowledge of cheese and wine.
For years, she made all the ravioli for restaurant Pekelhaaring and Speijkervet and was keen to continue making them for her own business. At Potagie, she makes different types of pasta and has a wide range of different, classic, but also exciting flavours of ravioli.