I was born in Perth and my family moved to Daylesford when I was five-years-old.
Growing up we had a vegetable garden that my parents would cook from all the time. I even had my own garden bed to plant whatever I wanted (although I planted boysenberries that took over the garden). That’s where my appreciation for seasonal good food came from.
When I was a teenager, I worked in front of house at a few different cafes in town. I then got offered an Chef’s apprenticeship at local restaurant. I was still unsure if this was what I wanted. It wasn’t until I was continuing my apprenticeship at a restaurant called The Perfect Drop that I realised this is absolutely what I was meant to do.
In the second year of my apprenticeship, I won a gold medal at the Fine Food Australia Apprentice Challenge for beef, lamb and veal. I did it with one hand because I broke a hand 2 weeks before snowboarding.
This was also the time I started eating out at nice restaurants and seeing what great things Victorian Chefs were doing. From there I moved to Kazuki’s where I finished my apprenticeship. I learnt cleanliness, technique and balance with food.
In 2018 I was offered a job at Sault restaurant as Sous Chef and a year and a half later I became Head Chef. I’m really enjoying the position and working with the team at Sault.
Have you always wanted to be a Chef?
Honestly not at all. I didn’t see myself cooking for a living until I was already in my apprenticeship. I kind of stumbled into it, which was lucky because I love it.
How would you define your style?
Anything is the go with me. I did train in French, Mediterranean and a bit of Japanese, but I find myself putting anything that tastes good on the menu…as long as it’s local and cohesive.
What is your feature flavour these days?
At the time of writing this, mushrooms – they are just too good
I get bored pretty quickly. It drives me insane if I haven’t changed anything for a while.
Your greatest culinary influence:
Mum. My Mum has always been so passionate about locally-sourced food. She runs a local bakery and is always trying to learn and find different ways to use grains, flour and food in general.
What do you love about this business?
I love that I get to be on my feet working, at the same time as being creative.
An ingredient you can’t live without?
An obvious answer to this would be salt. But at home, I could quite literally eat rice in some way for every meal of the day.
Most ‘eyebrow-raising’ menu item?
I don’t have anything too eyebrow-raising. I do like hiding flavours in dishes to make people think.
I’m a young Head Chef, so when I started in this position I really wanted not to use the same ideas twice and learn lots of different ways to cook.
What can diners expect when they eat at Sault and what makes the experience special?
Tasty food, delicious wine and amazing views. You can also walk around the kitchen garden.
What do you think COVID has taught restaurants and Chefs about their diners and the industry in general?
I think COVID made everybody really appreciate eating out.
Tell us something no one knows about you?
I can ride a unicycle backwards.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
Becoming a better Chef, but also continuing a good work-life balance