The Legian Seminyak, Bali is delighted to announce the appointment of Michelin-starred Chef Stéphane Gortina as new Executive Chef. From April 15, 2019, Chef Gortina will lead the team at this iconic hotel’s culinary venues, The Restaurant as well as The Pool Bar and The Ocean Champagne Bar.
Stéphane Gortina began his culinary career in France, his native country, and has since worked in various Michelin-starred restaurants including, Moulin de l’Abbaye in Brantôme and Restaurant Michel Chabran in Pont-de-l’Isère. He then moved on to join one of the most celebrated chefs in the world, Chef Alain Ducasse, with whom he worked at the renowned Le Louis XV at l’Hôtel de Paris in Monaco, and later moved to Alain Ducasse’s restaurants in Japan, Russia, UK, Qatar and Mauritius, where he gained valuable resort experience at the renowned Le Saint Géran. Most recently, Gortina has worked as Executive Chef at the Michelin-star Restaurant Rech by Alain Ducasse in the Intercontinental Hong Kong, where he has been the past five years.
One of the finest hotels in Indonesia, The Legian Seminyak, Bali is world-renowned for its exceptional culinary offerings. Arguably the best ocean-front dining destination in Bali, The Restaurant showcases a contemporary cuisine with a twist of Asian flavors and focuses on using local, organic and sustainable ingredients. The Pool Bar and The Ocean Champagne Bar offer light dishes, refreshing cocktails and a wide selection of fine Champagne throughout the day.
Chef Stéphane is excited to be in Bali and thrilled to be joining The Legian Seminyak team. The hotel is part of LHM – the new luxury hospitality and lifestyle company presenting the best of Indonesia and offering extraordinary experiences around the Indonesian Archipelago.
Speaking of his appointment Chef Stéphane says, “I am excited join the fantastic team at The Legian Seminyak, Bali. The hotel has an iconic reputation on the island and globally for many factors including its gastronomy, and I am excited to be a part of it. When it comes to the cuisine my aim is to continue the hotel’s legacy in offering the best of Bali as well as to bring guests and visitors a new culinary experience.”
Check out Prestige’s exclusive interview with Executive Chef Stéphane Gortina:
1. What was it that inspired you to become a chef?
Since my youngest age, my parents always brought me to restaurants, and I was really enjoying eating. I believe that my passion for food and for the culinary world started at that moment. That is how I knew I wanted to become a Chef.
2. You have worked with Chef Alain Ducasse for the past five years. What are some of the most memorable experiences you have from this chapter of your life?
Actually, I’ve worked with Chef Alain Ducasse for the last 14 years in different countries such as France, Japan, Hong Kong, Mauritius, UK, Russia, and Qatar…so as you can imagine, I have a lot of memorable experiences during my time with him! The fondest one would probably be when he was trying some dishes I had prepared for him and telling me that it was good. That was a truly memorable moment for me!
3. What is your main philosophy in choosing ingredients?
Especially when it comes to exploring local offerings whenever you travel… My main philosophy in choosing the ingredients is to get the best of the best local products when available. Not necessarily the imported one, but it must be the best. I also really enjoy incorporating local ingredients and traditional recipes in my dishes.
4. What was it that brought you to Bali and then The Legian?
The opportunity to work in such an iconic hotel as The Legian Seminyak, Bali. The entire resort not to mention The Restaurant is so elegant. The view on the infinity pools and the ocean as a background is unbeatable.
5. Indonesia has an immense culinary heritage. What are some Indonesian dishes that really piqued your interest?
One of them is the Beef Rendang. I really like the taste of the sauce made from so many different spices.
6. One item in The Restaurant’s menu that caught our eye was the Sirloin Beef Rendang with Labu Siam. Can you tell us a bit about how you came up with this unique combination?
I wanted to use this amazing and traditional taste of the sauce, bringing a modern way of plating and using high quality of beef.
7. The Legian is also known for its Pool Bar Ocean Champagne Bar. What are some of your personal favorites or highlights from the bar?
I really like the squid skewers with satay which is for me a great combination of local seafood and traditional sauce.
8. What would you say is the most challenging dish you’ve ever attempted to make?
The most challenging dish I have ever attempted to make is called “game pâté croûte” as it is very difficult to manage to get the perfect cooking of the dough together with the stuffing.
9. Conversely, are there any specific dishes or recipes that you’d like to tackle next?
Yes, I already have a lot of ideas using the incredible local products available in Bali such as seafood and vegetables…but I will not share all with you now, you will have to come and try!
10. In a nutshell, how would you describe your personal style as a chef?
I am a passionate person. I love cooking, I love food…and my aim is to share this passion with my team, and of course, with our guests.
11. Last but not least, if somebody wanted to impress you with their skills in the kitchen, what could he or she do?
They will have to cook a simple dish but perfectly cooked, seasoned and with her/his personal interpretation. Easier said than done!