How long have you been working on cruise ships?
Two years. I spend about 30 days a year at sea. As a boy I always had a fascination with ships such as the Titanic and the Normandy.
Does it surprise you to discover that cruise ships are growing in popularity?
You can see why cruise ships are popular because they are the best value holiday you can buy. In two weeks you see a bit of everywhere and in the evenings you can watch the shows. Once you’re on board all you have to pay for is alcohol.
Do you think food assumes less or more importance for passengers when they’re holidaying at sea?
A lot of people plan their days around the restaurants’ opening times, so it plays an important role.
What’s your aim in preparing great food at sea?
To deliver food that excites the palate and creates a great evening out.
When you’re cooking at sea, what dictates your menu?
I think that being inspired by summer should dictate the menu, meaning light and healthy food. We offer dishes such as halibut with citrus fruits and plenty of Mediterranean options, including lobster. There are plenty of great steak and lamb dishes for the passengers who want those, too.
How often does the menu change?
Every week, according to when ingredients are available and when we’re in a port selling fresh fish. It’s not like running a restaurant [on land] where if you forget to order something you just ring a supplier. The amount of planning you have to do is enormous.