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Bryan Burger

Executive chef of
Boathouse Wine & Grill

How long have you been with Boathouse Wine & Grill? What attracted you to the job?
I've been with Boathouse by Montara for two and a half years. I first started with Boathouse as the chef for RE KÁ TA Beach Club, before being promoted to Executive Chef late in 2012. In my current job, I look after both

RE KÁ TA Beach Club and Boathouse Wine & Grill. What attracted me to the position were the location and the opportunity to work at an iconic Phuket resort with a wonderful team. And, not many chefs get to work with a view from the kitchen like I do!

What were you doing / where were you living and working before?
Before joining Boathouse, I was working at Six Senses Destination Spa on Koh Naka, just off Phuket, as Executive Chef. At Naka our cuisine was focused on health and how, through food, you can help to rebuild and repair your body, which was a great learning experience. Before Thailand, I'd worked in Singapore, Koh Samui, Taiwan and Ireland.

Where are you from?
I come from a small city on the east coast of South Africa, called East London.

Tell us something about your role in the business?
I'm in charge of ensuring that both our kitchen outlets operate to the guidelines that we've set up.

What are the main challenges as they relate to your role?
As a chef, one of the main challenges has to be sourcing of products. It's not easy at times to find the product that we need. We're lucky to work with some great suppliers and producers, both locally and internationally, that help us to source the products we need.

What do you like most about what you do now?
There are many things that I enjoy about my job, but the one that stands out is the team we have at Boathouse. Everyone is dedicated to offering our guests the best experience from the time they walk in the door till they leave.

And what do you like least…?
Being right on one of the most beautiful beaches in Phuket and not having enough time to enjoy it!

What do you see as your biggest successes to date?
That would have to be the success of Boathouse Wine & Grill in this year’s Thailand Tatler’s Best Restaurants. Although Tatler doesn’t rank its listings, our restaurant actually scored the highest overall in Phuket

Please give us an overview of your typical day ‘at work’. How do you schedule your time?
Normally I get to work around 8.30am and do a quick check on breakfast. After that, off to the morning meeting followed by some emails. Then lunch service.

After lunch we have a quick meeting with the senior kitchen team members to discuss any events or special requests for the day. In the late afternoon we have a bit of time to try out some new recipes or work on menus for events to come. At around 5pm we start with dinner service. After 9.30pm it’s time to head home and spend some time with the family.

We work long hours and sometimes it's hard, but when you have a good team to support you both at home and in the kitchen it's a lot easier.

How would you describe your leadership style?
I'm not a chef that shouts if someone does something wrong. For me to be a leader is to be firm but at the same time to be able to listen and develop the team.

What's your over-riding ambition at this stage in your life?
For me that would have to be opening my own restaurant one day. Every chef dreams of that!

For further information about Boathouse Wine & Grill
Tel: +66 76 330015