Alex Sanchez is the head chef and founder of The Chef Ibiza, we caught up with him to chat about his inspiration for his dishes and his vision of the future for The Chef Ibiza. As many of you will know have worked closely with The Chef Ibiza over the last few years as our go to caterer for all of our villas. Whether its a fresh and healthy breakfast or a full dining experience you want Alex and his team never fail to deliver the freshest, locally sourced food with a tasty twist.
Where are you from and how has that shaped your attitude to food and cooking?
I am from Zaragoza, a city in the North of Spain, close to the mountains. My passion for cooking came thanks to the wonderful gastronomy surrounding me since I was born. Food was always a big part of our family’s culture and I was always intensely drawn to it.
Tell us about your journey with food and cuisine?
My great passion since I was little was to eat, and from that a passion grew in me for the kitchen and the hospitality industry. My journey began on the train that left the day I entered into the Hospitality School in Zaragoza, about 27 years ago. I feel that, that day I found my true calling. From there I had the opportunity to work in large hotels and restaurants which was of course very demanding. Every day was a challenge and an opportunity for personal growth. From there, my journey continued and I began to travel throughout Spain and eventually the world. Thanks to my work, I managed to combine my hobbies traveling, skiing, surfing and mountaineering, in countries like England, France, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia … and enjoy life to the full! It’s been more than 12 years since I created The Chef Ibiza, an idea that I developed long before, and that idea has continued to develop into a concept that still excites me.
What do you think Ibiza has that seems to draw so many great chefs here?
Ibiza is a world icon, it has it all, the Mediterranean, good food, great weather, unsurpassed energy, fashion, parties, security, marvellous sea and beaches … Ibiza is something indisputable. Ibiza is the place where everyone wants to be.
What influence does Ibiza have on your cooking?
Undoubtedly, Ibiza has deeply penetrated the cuisine at The Chef Ibiza, bringing freshness and a Mediterranean touch to our gastronomic offerings. Thanks to its local produce, traditional recipes and its friendly and hospitable people Ibiza is a great place to be a chef. I especially love the variety of products that are produced here on the island, all kinds of fish, such as raó and wild grouper as well as the diverse range of fruits and vegetables that grow in this wonderful fertile land. Some of my favourites are organic oranges, lemons, tangerines and melons. In fact, at my house we have 150 orange trees and another 50 trees with even more varieties, a real pleasure !!.
What is the ethos of The Chef Ibiza?
The key to the development of the business since the beginning, has been the core values that I believe are indispensable for the continued development of The Chef Ibiza. Respect, communication, order, organisation, cooperation and the ability to keep a calm head are all essential. The most important thing is that the client feels happy through great service and exquisite food.
If you had to choose one dish that encapsulates you as a chef, what would it be and why?
The truth is that it is difficult to decide on one in particular … but without a doubt, what I am most passionate about cooking, as a chef, is anything related to the sea. So I would say fish and seafood, for its delicacy, versatility and freshness. My favourite fish is the wild sea bream cooked in salt with aromatic herbs, Ibizan lemon and orange zest, which gives it a fresh and perfumed aroma but preserving the nuances and flavours of the remarkable fresh fish from the island. Another favourite of mine is the gambusí, a native shrimp, very small, eaten whole, fried and crunchy, true delirium for any palate, and one that you cannot find anywhere else.
Tell us a little bit about your team and what makes them special?
I can proudly say that the great key to our success is our team, from the management and customer service, right down to the catering team and the villa staff. Their passion, honesty and dedication, their camaraderie and their love for what they do makes it a privilege to work with them. Clients are touched with this wonderful energy and the professionalism that they project creates the perfect cocktail! PEOPLE TO MAKE YOU HAPPY !!
How has the pandemic affected business and how do you see the 2021 season working?
Well, it is true that in our sector, we have been able to surf the situation and grow in the face of adversity. But the events sector, which is a large part of our business, has been greatly affected, so we have concentrated more on private catering for villas, jets and yachts. Honestly, we think the 2021 season is going to be very good, I’m sure that our clients will continue to come. We continue to offer the best we can be with great service.
Any interesting news about The chef Ibiza you want to share with us ??
Of course !! The chef Ibiza never rests, I am always on the go and looking constantly for ways to improve and learn! Soon we will launch our new website and app, customers will have more flexibility and will be able to access services and payments through both portals. In addition to viewing content and recipes to really give a fully live The Chef Experience! This year we will start a new journey on the neighbouring island of Mallorca, where we will continue to offer the highest quality, private service, extending our reach even further across Balearic Islands.
It is an honour for us to collaborate with partners as serious and authentic as Mi Casa Tu Casa, thank you team !! We will continue to grow and learn together.