AYANA Zeitgeist

Translated from German, Zeitgeist means "the spirit of the moment", and is the key principle underpinning AYANA's service philosophy. Here, we share our inside tips and favorite haunts to help you experience the AYANA Zeitgeist.

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“Try hard.Try harder.” Robiatul – ROLE Models trainee at Pastry Kitchen

Where are you from? Malang, Java.

What do you think about this R.O.L.E program and how did you get the opportunity?
I see R.O.L.E as the perfect organization to support us and help us as women to reach our dreams, no matter how hard things may be for us, be it financial difficulties, or not having a good enough educational background. I heard about R.O.L.E from a friend. Now, I am studying English, cooking, basic working skills at the training center.

What gets you excited about being a R.O.L.E student? And what makes you nervous?
That I can learn English every single day and practice it with my tutors at the training center and at AYANA. But I have to admit that working and being trained by AYANA’s professionals gets me anxious too.

Has a career in the hotel industry always been your passion? If so, in which area specifically?
Yes. I have a passion for pastry and am also interested in housekeeping.

What is your message to friends?
Keep on trying to reach you goals. Nothing in the world should be big enough to stop you. When you try to do your best, you will be surprised to see that everything can fall into the right place. Like what R.O.L.E and AYANA do for me.

What do you want to achieve?
To be a pastry chef or open my own business. First, as soon as I complete my training program, I will apply for a job!

 

Formula 1 mania is about to descend upon Singapore yet again, but noise, stench and stress are not everyone’s dea of a good time. Some Singaporeans like Willin Low, acclaimed lawyer who changed his business suit for a white jacket and tall hat, are escaping to Bali.

Before building a reputation as one of Singapore’s most awarded and dynamic Chef – Restaurateurs, Willin Low led a life as a corporate lawyer from Mondays to Fridays. In the last two years of his full-time legal career, he would shed his corporate suit to become a private chef-for-hire on weekends.

In October 2004, Willin decided to make the bold move of switching careers. Though he had achieved much success as a law practitioner, Willin took up a trainee position with the Garibaldi Group. As the stars aligned, he officially hung the sharp tailored suit and changed into a white jacket, opening his signature restaurant Wild Rocket at Mount Emily a year later.

At Wild Rocket, Chef Willin applied his culinary philosophy of serving food that he himself would love to eat – Western food with a local twist. As a self-taught chef, one advantage Chef Willin has is that he possess a style that is unique and perhaps even quirky. Most of his dishes are inspired by hawker fare; his childhood craves; or by an interesting ingredient discovered while travelling. “Cooking is about providing happiness. Providing good food and service is the most basic need anyone requires. I think that is why I love cooking – and eating – so much ” says Willin.

It is safe to say that during the F1 season, there will be a noticeable absence of engine oil as Chef Willin brings his Wild Rocket recipes to Dava 21-23 September as guest chef, invited by fellow Singaporean, Dava chef de cuisine Jusman So – founder-chef of Singapore’ much-lauded Sage
restaurant (2010/2011 Miele List). Jusman will lend his kitchen to Chef Willin for three nights to serve up a special degustation menu, giving Dava guests the opportunity to experience another of Singapore’s culinary gems.

The F1 Fatigue menu by the guest chef, Willin Low from Wild Rocket in Singapore, will run from Friday, 21st September, till Sunday, 23rd September.

The prices for the menu are as follows:

4 courses @ Rp490,000 / 6 courses @ Rp650,000 / 8 courses @Rp790,000

 

 

Well-Placed Insider has a tough job and it does not get much tougher than sampling the new cocktails at Rock Bar while enjoying one of Bali’s famous sunsets.

From one new elixir to another, accompanied by one of the brisk bartenders from Rock Bar Bali, the sunset on this day seems a lot prettier, or maybe, it is the drinks that make it so?

The first glass offered from the new menu is ” Rock My Love”, a mix of Vodka, Wild Tea, Lemon Juice, Blueberry, Strawberry and Fresh Rosemary which gives a sweet edge to a thick texture. A drink that gets Well-Placed Insider thinking of the perfect bachelorette party.

” Rockito” is next. It is a milder and fruity version of a Mojito with a blend of Grand Marnier, Mint Spring, Fresh Orange, Fresh Lemon, Passion Fruit Syrup and Soda.

On the third drink, ” Rock My World” , the bartender explains that it is taken from the original menu and given a new twist, now having a richer taste for those thirsty for a refreshing yet zesty drink containing Vodka, Grand Marnier, Pineapple Juice, Lemon Juice, Fresh Orange and Kaffir Leaves.

Maybe it is pre-arranged, maybe not. But the last drink is a fine closure for the tough task that day. It is trulya lady’s must try ” Lady Long Island” which is a novel version of a Long Island Iced Tea with Vodka, Dry Gin, Light Rum, Tequila, Triple Sec, Lime Juice and Cranberry Juice. The drink gets Well-Placed Insider hooked at the first sip!

Thirsty yet?

 

AYANA’s Pastry Chef Made ‘Dena’ Sutisna has won many awards during his years in the pastry world. As he brings home the gold trophy from the recent Salon Culinaire event in Bali for his ‘Chinese Dragon’ sugar sculpture, he again proves himself as a non settler who keeps setting a higher bar every time he reaches a milestone.
We converse with him to find out the reasons behind his perseverance, why he thinks art is the core that embodies his passion, and how pastry can be his legacy for the future….

1. Where are you from? Where did you grow up?
Chef: I am from Denpasar both by birth and ancestry. I never lived elsewhere… this island is my flesh and blood.

2. At what age did your interest in cooking and/or pastry start? Was it part of your upbringing? Family business?
Chef: It was my uncle’s influence. He lived at our family’s house when I was little. I used to watch him bake, making cookies and believe it or not, I will always remember how our kitchen smelled so sweet and sugary at that time.

3. Are you formally educated in pastry/baking or did you go the apprenticeship route? Or both?
Chef: I say both. But the strongest pillars came from my apprenticeship.

4. Can you point to chefs or individuals who were influential in your pastry skills and development?
Chef: Easy. My ex boss. I can recite you the year I first work with him; 1996. His name is Bill McCarrick. He never underestimates his team, always open for new ideas and is generous with his knowledge and skill.

5. How is the appreciation of pastry and chocolate evolving in Indonesia?
Chef: For Indonesia in general, both private sectors and the government have shown a good appreciation and support. But Bali should be able to come up with something independently. This is something that requires an enormous effort form the Chef

Meet Ravinder Dalal, who joins AYANA as Chef de Cuisine (Indian cuisine) at Padi restaurant, where he will work alongside the resort’s Indonesian and Thai chefs to present a pan-Asian culinary journey. Here, he shares his favorite dishes from his homeland, his first impressions of Bali, and why he admires Gordon Ramsay.

What made you interested to join AYANA?
Chef: I was interested to join AYANA because AYANA is a very good property, with a good hotel reputation and in terms of branding, the most famous hotel in Bali.

What is your passion working as an Indian Chef?
Chef: I really love to cook all kinds of Indian cuisine. Delhi is known for its distinctive food from the times of the Mughal era and people love to cook with various styles. Food from that time was rich and flavorful and sparked my interest and curiosity about the culture and customs of Indian gastronomy.

Which dish do you most like to cook?
Chef: Mouth-watering Kebabs with authentic aromatic flavors.

Which dish do you recommend guests try?
Chef: All! Because all of my Indian dishes are very special and have different flavors that complement the other. They are very nice to enjoy ‘banquet-style’ with your family or a group of friends. Some of my personal favorites are Dal Makhni (Black lentil stew with a blend of mild spices, tomato puree, cream and butter), Murgh dum Bryiani (Long grain basmati rice and chicken cocked with aromatic rice, served with raita), Arwaini Jhinga (Roasted shrimps with mustard seeds, yogurt, and agwain spice), Tandoori Murgh (Marinated tandoori chicken) and Roghan Josh (Lamb curry stew with Kashmiri spices).

I notice that you have won awards at many competitions including one in which you had to cook dishes that used mango as their main ingredient. Can you tell us a bit about this?
Chef: This competition was organized by Delhi Tourism and lasted three days. There were more than 100 participants from various hotels and restaurants, including 10 from the Hotel Park Royal Intercontinental where I was working at that time. On the first day, we had to cook an appetizer, on the second day a main course and on the third day a dessert. I was responsible for the appetizer and I created a Mango Chicken Fantasy and won the Bronze medal, as voted by the panel of seven judges. I was very honored and satisfied with this achievement as I entered the competition really just for fun.

What is your favorite thing about Bali?
Chef: Bali is a beautiful place. Balinese people are very polite and friendly. I also love the beaches here, I usually like to swim at the beach in my time off.

Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?
Chef: Yes, Gordon Ramsay for his passion, speedy work, creativity and excellent results.
Another one is Corporate Indian Chef, Anil Khurana.

What do you like to do in your time off?
Chef: Swimming, shopping (I usually look for clothes and shoes of good quality, when I see these two items at the mall I forget everything else!), watching movies and listening to music.

 

Dava Chef de Cuisine Jusman So is one of Singapore’s most acclaimed chefs. His 40-seat fine dining restaurant, Sage, was nominated ‘Best New Restaurant’ at the World Gourmet Summit 2008 (the same year Jusman won Best Rising Chef), awarded one of Singapore’s Best Restaurants by Singapore Tatler magazine, and named on the prestigious Miele List in 2010. Since moving to Dava, Jusman has relaunched the menu as modern French and introduced his most popular signature dishes, enhancing them further using local flavors and the best available ingredients to offer a new level of gastronomical refinement. Here, he shares his Top 10 Tips for serving a meal your guests will never forget.

Top 10 tips:
1. Always season whatever you are cooking with salt to bring out the flavor.
2. Always taste your food before serving to your guests.
3. If you don’t like what you see on the plate, chances are that your guests will not like it too. So don’t serve it.
4. Always use a well sharpened knife. It will save you time and energy when cutting meats and vegetables.
5. Use heavy bottom pots and pans. It helps to distribute heat evenly and prevents burning.
6. After cooking, always rest your meats for at least 5 minutes before slicing. It keeps the juices in.
7. Never keep cooked and raw food together in the same container.
8. Fat is essential in cooking as it adds flavor and moisture so be generous. If you are health conscious, use grape seed oil or extra virgin olive oil. If not, hit it with duck fat or lard! You will not regret it. Trust me :)
9. Always use a countdown timer when you are roasting something in the oven or boiling something on the stove. It saves you the trouble of having to wash a burnt pot/tray and start over.
10.When it turns black, it’s definitely cooked! But send it into the trash and start over because it’s definitely burnt too!

Hello everyone,

It’s me again, I just wanted to say a very merry Christmas to those of you who will be celebrating it this weekend, and to give you a little insight into how I’ll be celebrating, with my lovely girlfriend Ayu. We plan to join the Christmas Eve Dinner at Dava restaurant with a special menu prepared by Chef Jusman So. I’m as hungry as a bear just reading the menu below! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and don’t forget, you still have a chance to join our Christmas Bear Contest on AYANA’s Facebook page. Good luck and season’s greetings!

Gede Bear

Christmas Eve Menus at Dava

Ocean Trout
Medallion of cured Petuna ocean trout topped with Avruga caviar and celery granite, toasted walnut and
herb salad with Granny Smith apple espuma

Turkey & Foie Gras
Terrine of slow cooked turkey breast and foie gras with cranberry relish, puree of baby yam with honey
and blood orange bubbles

Chestnut & Truffle
Chestnut mousseline laced with black winter truffle, double boiled poultry consomme, mushroom melba
scented with truffles

Barramundi
Barramundi fillet crusted with duxelle mushrooms with leek cream on a bacon, onion and potato galette
or
Veal
Baked veal tenderloin with pistachio mousse and smoked ham, glazed baby carrot and caramelized
orange confit, pumpkin crumble, natural jus

Chocolate Pudding
‘Valrhona’ chocolate pudding, dried fruits and almonds topped with lemon-infused mascarpone sorbet
and brandy eggnog

 

 

 


Chef Andik Purnomo moved toBalito take on the role as head Indonesian Chef at Padi restaurant. He has introduced several of his signature dishes to Padi’s new menu, including some handed down by his mother. He talks about his cooking + life inBali.

Q: How are you enjoying life here and what is your favorite thing about Bali?

Chef Andik: I really enjoy the island-life, very laid back. My favorite thing is probably the environment here in Bali, there is still so much nature to be found, very different from where I grew up.Surabaya is a metropolis with tall buildings and a lot of traffic. I prefer Bali’s island vibe.

Q: Did you cook growing up?

Chef Andik: Yes I did, I loved to help my mother cooking when I was still in Junior High School I was 13 years old at that time but I never really thought of a career as a professional chef. I think it’s my destiny because I have the talent, god is the one who decided I had to become a professional chef.

Q: What influenced your cooking style?

Chef Andik: Of course my mother’s cooking influenced my style, I always loved my mother’s dishes and was always trying to make the food taste just as good as hers. And clearlyIndonesiainfluenced my cooking style as well, I am an Indonesian-born chef specialized in Javanese dishes. I really love art, food is not only to eat. I like to think about the presentation of each dish, I am always trying to WOW the guests by showing them something different than they’re used to.

Q: What is the main difference between Balinese and Javanese cuisine?

Chef Andik: The main difference is the type of Sambal (chili based sauce) used, in the Balinese kitchen they use a lot of Sambal Matah while in the Javanese kitchen we always use Sambal Mentah. The sambal Mentah is raw sambal which is grained, the Sambal Matah is chopped sambal. These two ingredients are used in many Balinese and Javanese dishes and often identify the origin of the recipe.

Q: In your opinion where is the food better, Java or Bali?

Chef Andik: (Laughter) That is impossible for me to say, I come from Java of course I am going to say Java. However the Balinese food is great too! I am just going to say I love Indonesian food, especially authentic home-style dishes!

Q: Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?

Chef Andik: Ibu Sisca Soewitomo, a celebrity chef from Surabaya. She is older than I am and has a lot of experience too. I had the honor to work with her for 2 weeks in Surabaya and learned so much from her.

Q: What would you cook at home but never cook in a restaurant?

Chef Andik:TempePenyet (beancake with sambal), it is very healthy because there is not much cholesterol. Tempe Penyet is actually one of my favorites, it is very famous in Java but it’s a small side dish and does not suit the AYANA audience.

Q: Which Padi dish would you recommend, why?

Chef Andik: Oh there are many, but If I had to choose it would be the Beef Rendang, Ayam Kremes and Mixed Satay. All three are very good dishes and we receive a lot of positive feedback from guests, especially from local guests because they are able to compare them to the same dish at other restaurants in Indonesia.

Q: What three ingredients would you recommend everybody have at home?

Chef Andik: Shrimp paste, chili (all kinds) and shallot spice (but all kinds of spices is even better), tasty and useful ingredients for many dishes.

Chef Lert
After working for 5-star hotels on one of the most beautiful islands in the world, Phi Phi Island in her native Thailand, Chef Lert moved to another tropical island to join AYANA as Head Thai Chef at Padi restaurant.

Q: Did you cook growing up?
Chef Lert: Yes, a lot! I helped my mother all the time back home in Phuket. I also went to cooking school, so basically all I did was cooking. I cooked during the day at school and afterwards when I came home again I cooked for myself again. Cooking is a big part of my life. My mother taught me a lot but I also learned a lot from all the people around me.

Q: What made you decide to become a professional chef?
Chef Lert: It was quite clear from the beginning that I was destined to become a professional chef, I just love to cook and that will never change. A great hobby that allows me to travel the world!

Q: What is the main difference between Balinese and the Thai cuisine?
Chef Lert: To be honest the food is quite similar, both Asian. Only I would say that Thai food is a little spicier than Balinese, and also we use a lot more curry in Thailand than they do here in Bali. My all time favorite Thai dish is Tom Yam which is also available at Padi.

Q: Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?
Chef Lert: Not one person in particular, I am inspired by everybody I work with. I learn from everybody, everybody is specialized in a different area. Some chefs are very good at making a salad while others are very good at making desserts. I carry a notebook with me all the time and as soon as I see an interesting recipe or idea I write it down. There are many recipes in there now, gathered throughout my entire career.

Q: What would you cook at home but never cook in a restaurant?
Chef Lert: I make papaya salads at home all the time. Actually I can also make this at Padi, but it’s not currently on the menu. I just really like this salad so I make it often at home, plus it’s healthy.

Q: Which Padi dish would you recommend and why?
Chef Lert: Well the menu is a compilation of Thai, Indonesian and Indian recipes. If I may choose one from each country I would say my favorite Thai dish is the Tom Yam like I mentioned before. My favorite Indonesian dish is the Lobster Nasi Goreng i meme, and my favorite Indian dish is the Tandoori Murgh. But of course all dishes on the menu are good, that’s why they are there!

Q: What is your favorite thing about Bali?
Chef Lert: So many things, I like the Batik, the culture, the creativity, the wood carving, the paintings (laughter). I also really like the Balinese dances, when there is a Kecak or Ramayana dance at Langit Theatre I always get my camera to take some pictures.

Q: What three ingredients would you recommend everybody have at home?
Chef Lert: Chili, onion and garlic. I use these three ingredients in EVERY dish I make. They are essential for every kitchen. I love spicy food myself so chili is a real must, just sambal is not spicy enough for me.

The winning cake, Tiramisu and Chef Sutisna
AYANA Resort and Spa's pastry chef I Made Sutisna was recently awarded best pastry chef in Indonesia, after being judged the best overall performance in the international Fonterra Pastry Chef Challenge 2011. The chairman of the judging panel said the most important criteria for winning this competition was having a WOW factor, and Chef Sutisna's creations astonished the jury and most definitely satisfied this requirement.

First of all, congratulations on winning this contest. With which creation did you become Indonesia's best pastry chef?
Chef: I won the contest with my chocolate mousse cake with kaffir lime passion cream and macadamia croquant, a multi-layered cake which I call Literati. I had to make two of these, one only to display and one for tasting. The jury gave us 8 hours to prepare our cakes.

Is the dish available to AYANA guests, if so where can they get it?
Chef: This cake was specially created just for the contest, but it might be available in the future. It would best suit Sami Sami, as it fits the Italian menu because it's a very European type of cake.

How many chefs competed in the contest?
Chef: Ten Chefs in total were allowed to enter the competition, there were two from Bali, one from Bandung, one from Medan and six from Jakarta.

Have you won any other competitions in the past?
Chef: Yes, a lot (embarrassed laughter). I took the first place in the Asian Pastry Cup 2010I also joined the Fonterra competition two years ago in 2009 and came 2nd. This year I finally won the contest, very happy!

Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?
Chef: Yes, my mentor was a French pastry chef who taught me how to make beautiful and artistic creations with food. He taught me how to make up the plates but he also taught me many things about the tastes of food and how to use certain products.

What would you make at home but never serve to AYANA guests?
Chef: The birthday cakes I make for my children. They are very colorful and a bit childish, it would look a bit funny to serve them to our guests. They are also a little simpler to make than the complicated creations I make at AYANA.

What is your favorite thing about Bali?
Chef: Wooden sculptures, they are distinctively Balinese and very different from sculptures at all the other Indonesian islands. The sculptors have an amazing eye for detail. It is a typical Bali thing that I am very proud of, we (Balinese) have been making such sculptures for a long time and the workmanship is often passed from father to son, very traditional.

What three ingredients would you recommend everybody to have at home?
Chef: Sugar, flour and eggs! That was not too hard, since these are the three ingredients to make a cake with. It will be a simple cake, but the ingredients are essential for each cake no matter how complicated.

Any future competitions you will be joining?
Chef: Yes, the next competition I will be joining is regional final of the Fonterra competition, it will be held in Singapore in April 2012. I will be defending my title, we will be using the exact same ingredients only the rules of the competition will be different. I do not know yet what I will make for this contest.

How did you end up as a professional pastry chef?
Chef: When I was young I saw my uncle making cakes. I was interested and loved to help him. When I grew a little older I joined the school of Tourism, I chose to specialize in F&B, Pastry in particular and now here I am as Pastry Chef at AYANA. There is one very important thing to be successful at what you do: you have to be motivated and enthusiastic. Being passionate gets you so much further.