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Chef Niven Patel returns for the Brasserie’s Harvest Dinner

Local News 20 Feb, 2023 Follow News

Niven Patel

This month’s Harvest Dinner at The Brasserie heralds the return of Chef Niven Patel to Grand Cayman.  The restaurant’s former head chef’s star has truly ascended over the last decade, with three restaurants, Ghee Indian Kitchen, Orno and Marney, and his 2-acre homestead, Rancho Patel, to his name since he left Cayman’s shores.  Chef Niven was named one of Food and Wine Magazine’s Best New Chefs of 2020 and Ghee was awarded the coveted Michelin Bib Gourmand in 2022. This month he has been nominated for the 2023 James Beard Award for Outstanding Restaurateur along with his partner Mohamed Ali Akassar for Alpareno Restaurant Group, the parent of their three South Florida restaurants.

Chef Niven has been creating menus and dishes since his childhood in Georgia, USA; he used to make menus as a child and let his family order, cooking up whatever they wanted in the family kitchen.  He started his career at 3030 Ocean Restaurant at the Harbor Beach Resort and Spa in Fort Lauderdale, working under the Brasserie’s Executive Chef, Dean Max, for six years.  He then traveled to Italy for six months to learn and cook, returning to the US and then moving to Grand Cayman in 2012. His style is heavily influenced by those experiences and the way in which local ingredients are sourced and impacted by environment, driving him to push the envelope in his farm-to-table approach.   It is the same respect for sustainable, ethical and environmental values of the Farm-to-Table philosophy the Brasserie has been guided by for more than twenty-five years.

“We focus on local ingredients and farm-to-table, ” shares Dean Max, Executive Chef, the Brasserie. “As well as our garden produce, we have our own coconut plantation, bee hives, chicken coop for fresh eggs and our own boats for the freshest catch possible. “We try to create our menu from our local ingredients and work the flavours around that in the kitchen.”

Working closely with local farmers, Niven Patel has a deep appreciation for the journey to the plate and the delights of fresh produce and peak season flavours and he and his team lovingly cultivate the greens, fruits and vegetables at his home farm, Rancho Patel for his three restaurants. He started the farm when one of his cooks threw out half of a perfect tomato. “I lost it,” he recalls. It was clear to him that his team didn’t appreciate what went into growing the produce they used. “So, I told them, “You guys are all going to come to my house and we’re going to start a farm.”

On Friday 24th February Chef Niven, Executive Chef Dean Max and Chef de Cuisine, Artemio Lopez will join culinary forces to create a celebration of bold Spring flavours and local fresh ingredients with influences of both India and Italy.  The evening will begin with cocktails and canapes in the Brasserie Garden, before guests dine under the stars at the Caboose. Chef Niven and the team will serve three courses, inspired by the fresh seasonal produce from the Brasserie’s garden, plantation, beehives and coops, cooked over open fire on the Caboose grill. Brasserie Purveyors will provide the wine pairings for dinner, selected by Master Sommelier, Simone Ragusa, who has recently joined the Brasserie team.

The Brasserie Harvest Dinner series continues monthly through 21 April featuring international chefs, Pano Karatassos of Kyma, Atlanta on 24 March and Michael Backman of Aioli Bakery in West Palm Beach on 21 April.

Tickets are CI $150 per person plus 20% gratuities.

To reserve your seat for Friday 24th February with Chef Niven Patel or the March and April Harvest dinners,  email reservations@brasseriecayman.com  or call +1 345 945 1815.

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