In bygone eras, a sea voyage meal might include salt pork, a ship’s biscuit, and beer or rum. Thankfully in the age of refrigeration, the pork need not be salted and fluffy croissants replace the hard ship’s biscuit. Of course, beer and rum are timeless. Today, cooking below deck in the BVI, yacht charter chefs create incredible meals for the most discriminating guests. They are highly trained professionals who, on a daily basis, whip up meals that rival the world’s finest restaurants. Every dish, from tasty appetizers to out-of-this-world main dishes and luscious desserts, is created with you in mind.
Fans of the popular reality television show “Below Deck” may recognize the fabulous cuisine created by first-class chefs.
The chef wakes early to prepare breakfast for guests and, on larger yachts, for the crew. They bake fresh bread and muffins, chop fruits, and whip up eggs. They may also begin advance preparations for lunch and dinner, all the while maintaining a clean and tidy galley.
The galley, or kitchen, is usually a limited space with limited provisions, which can be challenging when cooking for guests with varied tastes. On the upside, sailing in the BVI allows for more access to local ingredients and extremely fresh seafood. Lobsters, Mahi Mahi, Tuna, and other fish are just outside the boat. Some chefs even have a small herb garden on the boat to ensure garden-fresh seasonings.
Communication is vital when preparing for your yacht charter vacation. When you fill out your Preference Sheets, it is essential to be as specific as possible as to your likes and dislikes and whether anyone in the group has special dietary requirements such as plant-based or gluten-free.
As for alcohol requests, let the chef know if there’s a certain wine you enjoy, a particular brand of rum, or even if you would like champagne with breakfast. Don’t be shy; this is your vacation!
Other things you might consider are whether you would like meals to be formal or informal, indoors or alfresco, or maybe a picnic on the beach. Will someone be celebrating an occasion such as a birthday or anniversary? How about a themed evening such as Pirate Day, Mardi Gras, or Under the Sea? The chef and crew can plan food and decorations accordingly.
Nia Mora, the award-winning chef on the power catamaran JAN’S FELION, is not only a versatile chef but also a talented photographer. Her work began in New York City, where she specialized in product photography and portraiture. After which, she began a campaign of sailing across the Pacific from Hawaii to Australia, photographing the landscapes and people of many of the Pacific islands.
In 2013 Nia settled in Australia for a year, where she developed work based on food, wine, and travel. After becoming an assistant chef in some of Brisbane’s trendiest restaurants, she acquired an eye for food styling and combined this with her photography. She now focuses her commercial work on her passions of food, wine, and travel.
The chef aboard a yacht is a professionally trained culinary expert. They plan and create all guest and crew meals, provision the yacht, and completely manage the galley. Of course, the chef maintains a high level of food safety and ensures that meals are prepared hygienically. Strong communication skills, extensive food/nutrition knowledge, and creative plate presentation are hallmarks of a good yacht chef.
Let the experts at CKIM Group curate a magical vacation for you, complete with fabulous cuisine.