St Petersburg, Russia.
My kitchen journey started as a kitchenhand at a little 50-seater French brasserie in Nova Scotia. I went back to Russia after completing my Chef training and went on to work at Varvary in Moscow, under Anatoly Komm.
From there I made the move to London to work at Galvin at Windows before making the move to Australia. My most recent role was on the Fleurieu Peninsula as the Head Chef of Leonards Mill.
Have you always wanted to be a Chef?
I fell in love with cooking at a young age. Growing up in a mixture of a Russian Jewish and Serbian family dynamic, food was always a very big part of everyday life, I spent a lot of time cooking with my Mom and decided that I could maybe do this as a career, fast forward 20 years and here we are!
How would you define your style?
I am very much about supporting local, as well as ethical
and sustainable suppliers and industry.
I am a very big believer in foraging and keeping food simple.
What is your feature flavour these days?
Prior to COVID, lacto fermented blackberries were a fun thing to play with, as well as ice plant and pigface. Coming up to the opening of Aura I will be focusing on more native Australian ingredients.
Your greatest culinary influence:
Growing up it was my Mom, early in my career it was Anatoly Komm and today it is a mixture of Vladimir Mukhin and Björn Frantzén.
An ingredient you can’t live without?
Maple Syrup, that is a Canadian childhood for you!
Most ‘eyebrow-raising’ menu item?
Not sure it’s too eyebrow-raising but recently it has been a smoked pig fat ice cream, but my Aura team and I are working on some pretty interesting and thought-provoking ingredients.
Mutton tartare, lamb fat aioli, pickled karkalla, verjuice mustard, wild mint, crispy hens yolk and purslane lavosh.
Aura restaurant, lounge bar and event space on the top floor of the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Liverpool Street, sits high in the sky between the Derwent River and Kunanyi (Mount Wellington) and is Hobart’s first rooftop venue. Positioned at the epicentre of spectacular Tasmanian scenery, Aura has been designed to encapsulate the juxtaposition of the natural elements that surround it. With a unique panoramic view of Hobart, fun dining approach to service and an informal, yet intimate environment, let Aura show you what occurs between the ocean, the mountain and the sky. Expect seasonal dishes such as quail, pistachio, Meyer lemon, dashi and molasses, or Cape Grim beef short ribs, Picante sauce, silverbeet and beer; before desserts of rum baba, caramelised white chocolate ganache and pineapple.