Bruce Bartholomew – Food & Beverage Manager
A native of South Africa, Bruce Bartholomew has received his hospitality training from renowned and award-winning restaurants and bars in London.
As KU DE TA’s Food & Beverage Manager, Bruce works in tandem with the chefs to insure that the food and beverage program are represented properly; and like the chefs he is inspired by local produce found in Bali and makes a conscious effort to use them in his cocktail menus at KU DE TA and Mejekawi. His philosophy is to extract the best and truest flavors out of the simplest of ingredients but also to maintain balance without overpowering his overall creations. He employs molecular and other modern techniques to invent truly unique cocktails which continue to impress KU DE TA’s well-travelled guests.
At KU DE TA and Mejekawi, he encourages an additional level of personality and creativity in his staff. With his dedication to creating exceptional personalized service, he hopes to provide guests with a memorable experience that will inspire incite them to visit again soon.
Benjamin Cross – Executive Chef
Hailing from a small village of Eltham, 30 minutes outside Byron Bay, Chef Ben began his career at the award winning ‘Rae’s on Watego’s’ Byron Bay. Since then he has travelled around the world and worked for a number of prestigious restaurants to feed his love for different kinds of cuisine.
Chef Ben has most notably honed his skills in the kitchens of household names such as Janni Kyritsis from former MG Garage and Neil Perry, as part of the re-opening team of XO and as Executive Sous Chef of Rockpool. Ben also did small stints at Tom Colicchio’s Craft in New York an Santi Santamaria’s three-Michelin star restaurant, Can Fabes in Sant Celoni. In May 2008 he came to join KU DE TA, and after being in second command for five years, in summer 2013 Chef Ben takes the helm at KU DE TA kitchen.
Bringing innovative techniques styles and cuisines from his travels around the world to KU DETA and the newly opened Mejekawi tasting kitchen and laboratory, Chef Ben is determined to bring KU DE TA and Mejekawi to the next level and placing culinary excellence at the fore. Chef Ben loves the challenge of cooking for so many people on a daily basis as well as continuously collaborating on re-inventing menus different dining programs and concepts.
Chef Ben takes great pride in being able to share in creating a memorable dining experience and hopes diners’ palates will be excited by the food he lovingly serves at KU DE TA and Mejekawi.
Stephen Moore – Head Chef
British-born Chef Stephen Moore has cooked in some of the world’s best fine dining restaurants, hotels and resorts for more than 20 years. Stephen first got into cooking when he was in primary school and it has become a way of life for him ever since. His culinary career began in Perigord, France, followed by stints in Switzerland and the UK. Stephen’s gastronomic skills were further honed in New Zealand and Australia, most notably Park Hyatt restaurants in Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney. His role as Sous Chef at Rockpool gave him a priceless opportunity to work with and learn from the iconic Chef Neil Perry, which was then followed with a change of scenery when he relocated to New Delhi, India to work for the luxurious Aman Resorts.
Stephen’s extensive culinary experience also includes 6 months with 3-Michelin star restaurant El Raco De Can Fabes in Barcelona, Spain with the late Santi Santamaria. Most recently he was based in Sydney, Australia where, together with acclaimed Chef Ross Lusted, he helmed The Bridge Room, during which it was awarded two Chef’s Hats in the Sydney Good Food Guide.
Spending time all around the world working in exotic and obscure places has helped him form a food philosophy that is not only technique and produce-driven, but also holds great respect for local food culture. Bringing his global influences to KU DE TA as Head Chef, Stephen will work together with Executive Chef Ben Cross to create dishes of the very highest quality and innovation for both KU DE TA and Mejekawi.
NUÑO GARCIA – Executive Pastry Chef
For more than a decade, Nuño Garcia, New Executive Pastry Chef of Bali’s most luxurious lifestyle destination, KU DE TA, and its imaginative restaurant, Mejekawi, has worked in Michelin-‐starred restaurants all over the world, ranging from his native Spain to England to Singapore. But Garcia wasn’t always so ambitious. A rebellious teenager growing up in Barcelona, Garcia never considered being a chef, until his father sternly told him “either you pick something to study or you’ll have to work in a field that I choose!” Garcia decided to go to culinary school because he loved his mom’s food and it sounded more entertaining than anything his father would pick!.
Chef Garcia entered culinary school in Spain at age 17, and trained in both classic pastry and savory cooking. He got his first big break at age 18 when he went to work for Chef Paco Perez at Miramar Restaurant in Girona, Spain. The restaurant earned two Michelin stars for its combination of avant-‐garde and traditional Spanish cuisine. Garcia calls his experience at Miramar “a second culinary school.” Next, Nuño worked with legendary Spanish Pastry Chef Oriol Balaguer in his eponymous dessert shop in Barcelona. Here he stayed two years, eventually arriving as Balaguer’s right hand man.
Garcia went on to work under world renowned Japanese Chef Tetsuya Wakuda for his Singapore restaurant Waku Ghin, widely considered one of the best restaurants in the world, as well as his ground-‐breaking Sydney restaurant. There Garcia mastered a style of cooking that embodies simplicity while striving for perfection. He also learned how to prepare incredible Asian ingredients like Momo peaches, Kyoho grapes and Japanese Musk melon.
Following his experiences as Waku Ghin in Singapore, Garcia fell in love with Southeast Asian culture and food, which is why he considers his current position as the Executive Pastry Chef of KU DE TA and Mejekawi to be a dream come true. His innovative and delicious desserts make the most of the technical capabilities of the kitchen, while also being incredibly soul satisfying and crave-‐worthy. His first and foremost goal is to please the customers while also highlighting Bali’s best ingredients with cutting-‐edge techniques and preparations.;