Ever wanted to work in a private, luxury chalet, but never taken the plunge? Are you curious as to how the life of a private chalet chef would look? Fed up of your current kitchen and fancy an alpine based culinary experience?
What makes the perfect dish?
A very personal question, but in general we’d say; Start with the best ingredients, local, seasonal and responsibly sourced produce. Create balance, between textures and flavour elements. Make it nutritional and filling while maintaining beautiful presentation, make it look as delicious as it tastes. Simple and delicious.
At Kaluma we place great importance on food, because we know our guests do too. Luxury, private chalet dining is about more than excellent cuisine though, like a perfectly balanced dish it’s about differing elements. The setting, your beautifully presented chalet dining room. The timing, dine at a time to suit you and your holiday. The food, consult with your concierge and chef or leave it in the hands of your chef to design an exciting and sumptuous menu. The service, personal and professional but relaxed. Nothing for you to do but enjoy.
Its about flexibility, confidence, adaptability as much as about the experience, the taste and presentation. Combined, they make the perfect combination.
So what makes the perfect chalet chef?
It’s a given that you have experience, you’re a professional who’s skilled in the kitchen with a wide range of styles. You’re also flexible, letting our guests take the lead in what’s on the menu and when they’d like to eat. You can adapt to dietary requirements and last-minute requests. You’re a team player, you see the big picture. It takes a chalet team to provide extra ordinary experiences and you see the value in every person involved in this. You’re happy working as part of the chalet team to achieve our overall goal of a relaxed, yet luxurious service.
We’ve worked with some fantastic chefs from restaurant kitchens and found that they are often pleasantly surprised by the difference’s luxury chalets present. Planning your menu rather than working from checks, serving the same group for 5 nights and getting to know your guests and tailoring your skills, friendlier hours and more freedom to organise and run your own kitchen. Think of it like a luxury pop-up with a set menu and repeat customers. We have a range of chalets, so our chefs can be catering to 30 people or just 6. In a closed kitchen with an assistant or on an open pass with a host to serve while guests look on from the dining table.
We give our chefs a fair amount of freedom, with both your menus and in how you operate. We provide a generous and flexible budget and guidance and support when needed. We want you to have your freedom as well, life isn’t all about work and we encourage our team to strike a balance so that they can enjoy resort life. After all, living in Courchevel 1850 or St. Anton might be a once in a lifetime experience. Therefore, organisation is key to this role. It’s all (well mostly) in the prep! Plan a menu you can comfortably and effectively deliver, don’t over complicate your dishes and keep a well organised kitchen and you will maximise your free time. We don’t expect you to live in the kitchen!
We do expect you to be more than a standard chef. This isn’t a job for someone who just wants to keep their head down on a kitchen section. We’re looking for naturally hospitable people who enjoy looking after and feeding our guests. Even in a closed kitchen this is a guest facing role, you’ll present your food and talk to guests. So you need to be well presented, polite and welcome interaction.
Creativity is of course essential and encouraged, and this is a role that offers plenty of variety through catering to different nationalities, ages and tastes. Special events are commonplace, birthdays, anniversaries, corporate gatherings. Some examples of the lengths our chefs have gone to are;
- Packing a luxury picnic for a mountain top engagement. Champagne soaked glittered grapes, chocolate coated strawberries, homemade chocolate truffles, pink salt butter and salmon pate with fresh bread and of course, chilled champagne!
- An eight-course taster menu to show case local ingredients for an Austrian themed wedding anniversary, followed by a chalet party with the hosts in traditional dress.
- A seafood delight (in the mountains!) with fresh seafood delivered straight to the chalet
- A 100 person corporate bowl food reception for a famous product launch
- Celebrity dinner parties and Royal functions!
To treats as simple as:
- Putting on a design your own burger night for a child’s birthday to make them feel special, complete with personalised menu that doubled as a birthday card.
- Pizza nights , home made with the kids and cooked on the Big Green Egg
- Countless special birthday cakes and celebrations, the most memorable being a home-made doughnut tower decorated to decadent perfection or the cake request that was literally the size of the dining table!
All of our chalets have a Big Green Egg, the BGEs are used by an increasing number of Michelin starred chefs, who endorse the greater flavour and taste the ‘Egg’ can offer. Roast, grill, slow cook, fry, bake, baste and make pizzas on the Egg. Our chefs have used the ‘Egg’ to cook the Christmas turkey, smoke chicken, roast whole cauliflower and bake brownies. They add theatre to the guest experience and huge flavour food.
To show case the variety and creativity our chefs bring to the table here are some of our personal and guests chalet favourites:
- Lamb ribs with romenesco, rosemary smashed potatos and almond crumb
- Porcini mushroom pappardelle with thyme, parsley and shaved parmesan.
- Raw vegetable layered lasagne with green salad and lemon potato’s (vegan). *
- Cote de Boeuf, slow cooked and reverse seared all on the Big Green Egg, carved at the table and accompanied by homemade chimichurri sauce, BBQ corn ribs and thick cut wedges.
The list could go on and on and you can see fine list of chalet examples on our website, clicking here
Is this for you?
So that’s the ingredients for the perfect chalet chef. We’ve had great chefs from various backgrounds, with different motivations. Established chefs seeking the freedom to experiment. Perhaps you’re planning on opening your own restaurant and want to build your repertoire and test ideas, we’ll give you the creative freedom to design, develop and perfect your craft. You’re a yacht chef in the summer season and are looking for a land-based season in the winter, there are many parallels between working charters and what we do. Up and coming chefs looking to break into private dining, this can be the perfect steppingstone and a chance to cater for potential future clients. Or perhaps you’re a seasoned professional chef looking to work in a smaller, luxury environment and re-inspire your love of cooking.
Where are they now?
Many of our chefs have gone onto some fantastic adventures following a season or two with Kaluma.
We have the chef who opened his own restaurants in Cornwall, England and worked with the Big Green Egg Company!
Several chefs who went onto forge successful careers on the Superyachts
A chef who is now a personal chef to a film star
A few chefs who have gone onto private dining with private families, travelling the world
A chef who still works for one of the Middle Eastern Royal Families as a private chef
Several chefs who now have their own private dining agency businesses doing very well
And the chefs who come back season after season in the winters, while working the summers in private villas, changing locations each summer.
It’s an exciting career choice!
To apply please send your covering letter and CV with a recent photo of yourself to firstname.lastname@example.org
To support your application we ask you to send a 5 day menu plan and your portfolio / pictures of dishes / social media handle so we get a sense of what you can do
Please note that you need an EU passport, CDS or EUV 50 or Work Visa for France or Austria.