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Akuc is Eritrian and Sudanese. She learnt how to cook at a very young age. Her mom taught her all the important necessities in being a great cook. This inspired her to study commercial cookery before beginning her apprenticeship at Spice Temple where Neil Perry selected her as one of the best junior talents across all his kitchens. She was one of the star chefs on Channel Ten’s ‘Masterchef The Professionals’ in 2013. Akuc’s goals are to give Australians the experience of East African cuisine. She hopes to one day open a restaurant of her own. As a classically trained chef she understands the benefits of using the best ingredients, locally grown and made.
Danè Chatani is a Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute - trained chef, who believes well cooked food - using fresh produce and prepared with care and love, is an essential ingredient for health and well-being. She went on to work under the infamous David Thompson, founder of Darley St Thai and has since been a private chef in Sydney for the past 8 years at The Nutritional Chef.
Currently Danè is finishing her Nutritional Medicine studies to obtain her Health Provider License. She is exceptionally well trained at working with foods for varying health conditions. Her philosophy is simple: Healthy food should be enjoyable food.
Doug has worked for over 8 years in restaurants in Australia and the USA with some of the best in the industry (including one and two-hatted restaurants in Sydney). A qualified chef who also has a degree in Environmental Studies, Chef Doug is passionate about food sustainability and is committed to the greenest possible approach to cooking. Chef Doug has extensive experience across various cuisines (from Greek to French to Asian fusion) and loves nothing more than experimenting with new flavours and ingredients. He has worked with nutritionists, athletes and individuals who have various food allergies or special diets (including weight loss). Some of the notable restaurants Doug has worked at include Rockpool Bar & Grill, The Apollo, Jimmy Liks, Pullman Hyde Park, Novotel Darling Harbour and Pitaria Mediterranean Grille (USA).
Giuliano studied at the Italian Chef Academy and proceeded to become an intern at one of the fanciest restaurants in Bologna. Immediately after, Giuliano was given the opportunity to be involved in kitchen operations and rose very quickly to the top, running his own restaurant in a huge resort in Italy.
Now in Australia, he aims to share his culinary knowledge and experience through Intertain.
Lucia has been a private chef here in Sydney for 5 years, with previous experience in Italy, China and the UK. Lucia specializes in traditional Italian regional food, Asian-Italian fusion recipes, Organic and biodynamic meal preparation, gluten and sugar free, Paleo diet, Foodmap diet, IBS diet, food for toddlers and pregnancy and has a deep passion for developing her own recipes.
Being born and raised in Italy has given her the love for seasonal food and simple combinations of flavours that can offer a unique gastronomic experience. Part of her training has been done in Sorrento and Pozzuoli, beautiful gems of the Italian southern region of Campania, where fresh seafood, lemon scented desserts and colourful vegetables are the base of the Mediterranean diet.
Originally from Brazil, Mauricio started cooking at an early age through his grandmother’s Italian cooking style and now specializes in Italian and Modern Australian cuisine. Mauricio has worked in catering to include events for big brands like Christian Dior and Mimco in cocktail brand launches, cooking lunches at Biennale of Sydney and preparing executive dinners for the Government House, The British Consulate and The Parliament of NSW.
Mauricio loves the idea of cooking the food that he enjoys cooking and eating, appreciating the chance to follow his own instincts in the kitchen.
Paul Drake is an Executive chef with 25 years experience cooking in restaurants hotels and resorts around the world. Learning about diverse cultures is one of Paul’s main sources of inspiration.Travelling extensively throughout East Asia, Japan Europe and the Americas has provided a direct experience of their cuisine and in particular and appreciation for their street food and traditions. Curiosity and willingness to constantly research new flavours and ingredients distinguish Paul’s cooking style, which entails the capacity to influence diverse cuisines by also maintaining their integrity.
Thomas is a professional chef of over ten years experience, whose knowledge and passion drives him to perfection in all that he does. He started out at the Nepean TAFE, subsequently at the King Henry Court in Penrith and then became the Head Chef at Café Lattetude and Wallacia Hotel. Thomas then started his own catering company at Taste of RYE Gourmet Catering. Fun fact, Thomas was previously a Zumba dance instructor! He says, “If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with them. The people who give you their food give you their hearts.” Thomas will give you his heart.
Vince Ieraci was born in Calabria, Italy and migrated to Australia at the age of 4 years old with his family and grandparents. This is where his journey with food became the essence of everyday life, surrounded by the traditional simplicity of Italian flavours and techniques. Vince has been fortunate to work with some of Australia’s best restaurants and chefs including Manu Fiedel from Bilsons, Matt Moran from Aria, Pink Salt Double Bay and Doltone House. Determined to establish his own identity, Vince opened his very own Italian restaurant in Western Sydney; a home-styled fresh pasta restaurant called Riccardo’s. After 5 years he ventured into personalised catering for corporate and private clients where he met the likes of Alessandro Del Piero, Mel Gibson, Kyle Sandilands and NRL Stars Paul Gallen and Michael Ennis.
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