Q: Tell us about your educational background and your work experience to date.
A: I completed my studies at Malta’s Institute of Tourism Studies, whilst working at different restaurants to gain as much experience as possible. I started my journey at Grand Hotel Excelsior, and by time moved to Hilton Malta and later The Phoenicia Malta. I also worked in smaller restaurants such as one-MICHELIN star Under Grain in Valletta and The Fork and Cork in Rabat.
Q: Why are you so passionate about being a Chef?
A: Food is a man’s best friend. A career as a Chef allows you to exercise your creativity. You can develop your own recipes or alter existing ones, whilst experimenting with different ways to garnish dishes and impress customers with different tastes and visual presentations. I can help customers expand their palate and discover new taste combinations that they had never considered before. It gives me great pleasure and satisfaction seeing my creative dishes being savoured by clients.
Q: Mention five words to describe yourself and your work ethic.
Passionate, innovative, meticulous, dedicated and adventurous.
Q: Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
A: After the start of my culinary career, my main desire was always to own and operate my own restaurant. It’s now been almost a year since the opening of Scala, and although the ride is not easy, my passion for food and service conquers any doubts and difficulties that arise along the way. My main focus is to keep doing my best to offer impeccable service and a wonderful gastronomic experience to all my clients.
Q: Can you mention Chefs who have inspired you? What do you admire most about them?
A: All the Chefs I have worked with have been very inspiring teachers. Chefs Victor Borg, Head Chef at MICHELIN-starred Grain and Noel Azzopardi, then Chef at Hilton Malta, now Chef Patron at Kaiseki, in particular had a great influence on my life and culinary career. From these masters I learned the value of artisanal ingredients, as they taught me to be proud to create dishes with Maltese products. While working with them, I learned to look beyond trends, to try to be expressive and different.
Q: What is your favourite dish to cook and why?
A: At the moment, my favourite dish to prepare has to be the Golden Apple Tarte-Tatin, with chicken liver and Foie Gras Parfait, which I included in the latest menu we launched. Contrasting flavours are a perfect marriage, and this sweet and savoury dish results in an art of balance.