Food epiphany? My mum is a great cook and from a young age I used to muck around in the kitchen. When I was about 14, I realised that I really enjoyed it and started thinking about it as a career.
Kitchen hero? Michel Bras – a three Michelin Star French legend.
First job in food? I started my apprenticeship at The Manor House Restaurant in Balmain.
Favourite ingredient? It’s quite hard to have a favourite, but I would have to say Australian seafood, especially abalone, sea scallops and sashimi grade tuna because of the freshness and diversity.
Most overrated ingredient? Wagyu beef, because there is so much inferior product on the market that it is losing its mystique.
Favourite Sydney supplier? Matt Brown Greens.
Favourite Sydney cheap eat? Yum cha and Sea Treasure in Crows Nest.
Guilty pleasure? Chocolate.
Food you can’t/won’t eat? Avocado.
Indispensable kitchen tool?
Hours in the kitchen per week? 55 to 60 hours per week.
Finest food moment in food? Having Thomas Keller and Heston Blumenthal in at Quay for lunch.
Most memorable meal you’ve ever had? My tenth wedding anniversary, dining at MG Garage when Janni Kyritsis sent us out 10 desserts for each year of marriage. The whole table was full and everyone in the restaurant was looking at us.
Best food tip for Sydney diners? When you go to a top restaurant, have an open mind.
Advice to the home cook? Have your own herb garden, there is nothing like ducking out the back for that fresh basil leaf or freshly snipped chives.
Five ingredients that can conquer the world? White peaches, mangosteen, mud crab, superb chocolate and French unpasteurised cheese.
Last supper? Exquisite sushi, roasted wild Scottish partridge with all the trimmings and fresh mangosteens with vanilla ice cream and lychee granita.
Home cooking? Quite simple things like a nice roast chicken or beef on the BBQ.
Weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten? Fresh sea cucumber.
Plates... I have some of them made to my specifications by Paul Davies.
Waiters... can make the difference between having a good and a great night.
Customers... should always come to a restaurant with the expectation of having a good night.
Sommeliers... are an important link in getting the most out of your dining experience.
Kitchen hands... are an essential part of the kitchen team.
Quay, Overseas Passengers Terminal