Chef Agung Gede’s IMAGINATION EXPLORATION

Executive Chef Agung Gede works behind the scenes of the iconic Kayuputi restaurant of the St. Regis Bali Resort, treading the thin line between fine and culinary arts.

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Executive Chef Agung Gede works behind the scenes of the iconic Kayuputi restaurant of the St. Regis Bali Resort, treading the thin line between fine and culinary arts.

BALINESE NATIVE Chef Agung is not only a talented and passionate chef, he is also a true culinary artist. Before working on his ideas and inspiration in the kitchen, he pours them onto sketches of food composition.

Needless to say, under his lead, each of the dishes at Kayuputi has been thoughtfully handcrafted and designed by the exceptional Kayuputi team.

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“For me sketches or drawings are a preliminary exploration of our imagination or ideas. It’s a way to ascertain the visual aspect of the dish,” Chef Agung elaborated. “Similar to a designer and architect, every line of pencil on the paper is all about characters and emotions, we need fine tune for the sketches to ‘speak’.”

“When we get the right one, we then start to transform to the real work: the real visual which we can feel, smell, touch, taste and listen. The sketches help my team to understand my ideas more.”

Chef Agung was born with culinary passion, almost literally. His mother told him that when she was pregnant with him, she loved to eat sate every day, be it lamb, beef, pork, or other meat. “As a kid, I loved sate more than anything. It was the first dish I learned how to make. I learned to  make different sate from different people. In Bali, every regency has their own sate style,” he reminisced.

Growing up, as he was encountering more and more types of food, his curiosity arose. “I decided to pursue a career in culinary; I felt this was my passion, I love food very much,” Agung said with conviction.

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Passion, as Agung sees it, is very important to drive him to higher levels of creativity in the kitchen.  “We need to have passion to do it, with strong basic cooking skills as the foundation in the creative culinary process.”

The laid-back chef explained his cooking style as Asian-influenced haute cuisine. “For example, I love to use fresh long pepper to season red meat; different miso for curing, marinating, making broth; kafir lime for the final touch of seafood dishes; different types of tea for smoking fish or foie gras.”

The six-time Wine Spectator Award-winning restaurant offers guests an unforgettable dining experience. The stunning menu parallels magnificent views over the pristine beach and the Indian Ocean, underlined by architectural design that seamlessly blends comfort, luxury and intimacy with  indigenous sophistication.

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Driven by Agung’s artistic passion, Kayuputi has offered some of the most delectable dishes which include panko fried oyster with apple sambal; Asian spiced oxtail consommé with oxtail dumplings and garnitures; and pan seared sea perch fillet with corn, char grilled baby calamari, kemangi basil oil, coconut chips, and curry-flavored corn nage.

His menu is complex integration of Asian and Western flavors in styles and presentation, emphasizing on thoughtful and authentic preparation that ensures the most complex tastes and textures.

Indonesian traditional food, however, remains his go-to food, especially the ubiquitous and versatile Nasi Goreng. “The fried rice is a simple food suitable for breakfast, lunch or dinner,” he said with a big smile.

KAYUPUTI RESTAURANT
The St. Regis Bali Resort
Kawasan Pariwisata
Nusa Dua, Bali
T: +62 361 3006786
IG: @kayuputirestaurant
Facebook: kayuputibali
Twitter: @stregisbali
www.kayuputirestaurant.com


Written by Jed Doble August 27, 2016.

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