Alila Villas Uluwatu’s Executive Chef Adrian Hauenstein is known for his positive attitude, and he credits it as a key to leadership. He talks to Exquisite Taste about how he started and more.
E: How did you first get into the culinary industry? Has it always been your passion?
A: As a young child, I often helped my grandmother in the kitchen. I really enjoyed and was fascinated with the process, how we created delicious dishes using ingredients that were harvested from our own farm. Highlights were always the festive season, when we baked and prepared typical Christmas cookies and other specialities for the whole family together. Since I was so passionate about it, I decided to join an apprenticeship as a chef and learn and explore more about the job.
E: You’ve been in the industry for quite a long time. How do you think the culinary scene differs from when you first started to now?
A: Compared to when I start, I would say in general that many people are using more modern cooking techniques now. It’s 2023, nowadays every dish has to be “Instagramable” and there are certainly more trends than in the past. It is also supported with many culinary-related media and of course social media. Supermarkets and suppliers have a wider range of ingredients coming from all over the world at almost any season of the year. This consistent supply definitely influenced the scene as well.
E: How would you define the culinary offerings at Alila Villas Uluwatu?
A: CIRE showcases a tantalising Mediterranean-inspired menu and experience with a focus on fresh seasonal ingredients, along with a culture of sharing food that nurtures the spirit of community. Simple and straightforward recipes elevate CIRE’s emphasis on gourmet comfort food to the next level.
Meanwhile, The Warung presents wholesome traditional Indonesian and Balinese fare. We keep a clean profile there, less is more, and most importantly is that almost every dish on the menu comes with a story behind it. Very often are grandmother’s recipes used for the spice base and sambal, which is an amazing explosion of tastes and often the key of the success.
E: As the executive chef, what do you think is the key to success in leadership?
A: I make the best experience with a positive attitude and leading by example.
E: Where do you draw inspiration for your culinary creations?
A: This can be from a simple market visit, a nice meal in a restaurant, a good cook book, a chat with other co-workers from the industry, or videos and images on social media.
E: Any upcoming projects, culinary-wise, for Alila Villas Uluwatu in the near future?
A: We did many collaborations in the first semester, and now is planning for another one while focusing on crafting something special for end of the year. We are looking forward to welcoming and surprising all guests with the fresh menus in The Warung and CIRE restaurants.
E: What advice would you give someone who wants to have a career in the culinary industry?
A: Practice, practice, practice!
Exquisite Taste Volume 40
Alila Villas Uluwatu
Jalan Belimbing Sari, Tambiyak, Pecatu
Bali 80364, Indonesia
T: (+62) 3618482166