Matt is the head chef of SilverStar's only 5-star restaurant, Silver Grill. The one-of-a-kind specialty restaurant features a changing menu with ingredients in every dish sourced locally.
Don't be fooled by Matt's young exterior, he knows his way around a kitchen with more than 10-years’ experience as a chef. He comes all the way from Australia where he worked at some of the best restaurants the country has to offer.
"The past few years I ran a flagship seafood restaurant in one of the most picturesque places in Western Australia, only meters from the beach, which was very produce driven, working with local suppliers, fisherman and farmers," he said.
When we asked Matt what inspired him to become a chef, he quickly gave the credit to his "nan."
"Growing up in a big family as a child, food was a pretty big part of life, as well as eating together."
Since moving to the Okanagan Matt has learned to appreciate not only our locally produced food but our amazing wine region as well.
SilverGrill hosts multiple Winter Wine Dinner Series and Matt says the dinners are a major highlight in working at the mountain.
"Working with local wineries, learning about this fantastic new region and writing degustation menus every two weeks certainly keeps me busy," he said.
"It's such a great opportunity having the chance to research native foods, local farms and use the fantastic seafood we get over here."
Matt says he absolutely loves dressing the "beautiful" salmon that Silver Grill receives and he is thankful that he gets to create every menu to accent the products perfectly.
For Matt it's simple, he wants every guest he cooks for to leave Silver Grill feeling fulfilled.
"I just hope they get to relax, forget about time, drink plenty of local wine and indulge in as much of our fresh produce as they can… doesn't sound too bad to me!"
CRAFT BEER DINNER
ZOE O'BRIEN Head Chef at The Den Bar & Bistro
Zoe O’Brien’s culinary career began early on, inspired by her grandmother who is passionate about fresh produce and good food.
After graduating from William Blue Culinary School in Sydney at the young age of 19, Zoe moved to London, England where she was offered a chef position at the elegant European cafe, Wolseley in Piccadilly to further develop her skills and knowledge in the culinary world.
This experience helped Zoe move on and work at some of the top restaurants in Sydney, where she became skilled at cooking various international cuisines. Not only is she now well-versed in cooking a wide spectrum of culinary dishes but her experience working at some of Sydney's most prestigious restaurants heightened her passion for fresh ingredients and fine dining food.
Zoe’s first-ever snow season was in Perisher Australia, which eventually brought her to SilverStar Mountain Resort. Zoe has worked four back-to-back seasons between both Perisher and SilverStar, where she is currently the head chef of The Den Bar and Bistro at the age of 23.