‘The Master of the Kitchen’

Passion, commitment, integrity, humour and a sense of adventure are just a few of the words that sum up the Executive Chef for the Abdullah Khalifa Lootah Group, Chef Chritian. Overseeing the culinary operation across all of the group’s restaurants and coffee shops, including menu development, new recipes, purchase control, culinary training, recruitment and other important aspects, his ongoing goal is always to bring diners’ experience of eating out to the next level.

“I have been an Executive Chef for 25 years, the last 13 of those in Dubai. In addition, I worked 27 years for the Marriot Group, so I have basically been in the industry all of my life and have overseen the refurbishment of many kitchens,” Chef Chritian explains. “Things have certainly changed during that period too; there have, for instance, been numerous improvements in how commercial kitchens are designed and built. Today, people realise that you can’t design a kitchen from 3000 miles away, you have to be on-site and you have to double-check everything.”

Indeed, Chef Chritian believes that it is vital to the success of a new kitchen that the restaurant, cafe or hotel in question works with a really good local company. “Because they are local, they are there. That’s one of the main reasons we work with Al Halabi, as well as the fact that we are on the same wavelength. The big thing for me is service, and Al Halabi simply can’t be beaten in this area – if they are needed, they come. Naturally, if something is going to go wrong with a piece of kitchen equipment it’s probably going to be in the evening – that’s just the way things are! But whatever the time, Al Halabi responds quickly and professionally. This is something that gives me great peace of mind.”

Chef Chritian is also very impressed by much of the equipment offered by Al Halabi, which, he says, is frequently different and better than what many rival companies offer. “And if there is anything they can’t do, they are honest with me,” Chef Chritian continues. “They don’t try to ‘fudge it’ in order to try and simply get the work.”

A very busy man, Chef Chritian, who has been exposed for over a decade to the raw and exciting ingredients we all know and love here in our very own food passionate country, is about to get a whole lot busier. “We currently have two hotels under construction, and I’m really enjoying putting the kitchens together.” Finally, asked if he will be using Al Halabi on these projects he responds without hesitation: “Of course!”

  • By Bilal Al Halabi, Al Halabi Ref. & Kitchen Equipment www.al-halabi.com

 



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