Exclusive Interview With Executive Chef Mitsuaki Senoo of Ayodya Resort Bali
The Eat Vacation team recently sat down with the Executive Chef of Ayodya Resort Bali, Chef Mitsuaki Senoo for an exclusive interview.
Chef Mitsuaki Senoo first tried his hand in cooking as a young boy growing up in Japan. At 8 years old, he began to prepare food for himself while his parents worked; discovering the joy of cooking that eventually turned it into more of a hobby for the youngster.
“So maybe around 8 years old I started to cook, [first] pop mie [instant cup noodle], then cutting [and preparing] vegetables, meat or something – whatever we have in the fridge. I really enjoyed it,” Chef Mitsu told Eat Vacation in a recent interview.
Now the Executive Chef at Ayodya Resort Bali, Chef Mitsu says his professional journey could be traced back to when he was just 16 years old learning how to cook from a local chef, then eventually opening his own food truck in Tokyo and started selling a variety of dishes on the street. He prepared all types of Asian food, and found a lot of people started to queue for his food – leading him to believe that he could do something more professional.
“I had been playing music, so I didn’t want to be chef before,” Chef Mitsu said, describing a dream he once had of becoming a rockstar.
He played music and cooked for a long time, often doing it one after the other. After a while, Chef Mitsu began to realise the extent of his own passion when it comes to cooking, and decided to try out his hand at a more established venue. At 24, he began to work at a famous restaurant in Tokyo, and started to learn more about the culinary world.
In Bali, where he’s lived for around five years, Chef Mitsu likes going to see the fishermen himself and checking out their catches of the day: the activity, he says, helps him pick the best ingredients for the Resort’s guests.
“Sometimes I wait for 30 minutes, until they come back. That’s the best way [to get the best ingredient] – if I don’t do it like that, I don’t want to get anything,” Chef Mitsu said, adding that it’s often difficult to find trustworthy suppliers.
“I just want to make sure, by myself, the quality. People think I’m crazy and sometimes suppliers don’t want to deal with me – I check on too many details from the morning, from the vegetables to everything else.”
It’s obvious that the easygoing chef pays close attention to detail, while also sharing that he could spend a long time just looking at products in the market, especially those related to seafood.
At Ayodya Resort Bali, Chef Mitsu emphasises on the experience that guests can acquire by dining at the Resort, including the mixture of cuisines that are available on the various dining outlets, as well as the beautiful scenery at the property.
According to Chef Mitsu, dishes served at Ayodya Resort Bali is a product of the Resort’s professional chefs working together and sharing their expertise and techniques, creating a blended culture that translates into a dining experience for the guests who come by.
“All guests must be happy after dining in our resort, I want them to have a full-on experience, with attraction and hospitality, this is also very important,” Chef Mitsu said, further emphasising how the Resort’s friendly and experienced staff helps create an atmosphere satisfies the guests.
Chef Mitsu is motivated when his team members takes on initiatives to do something different, and revels in the prospect of a challenge on a daily basis. While there was once upon a time when he desired to be a celebrity chef, understanding the industry gave him insight on the real value of cooking and the truth he wants to present in all his dishes.
“What we cook is going to be the truth, and it will speak of who we are,” Chef Mitsu said.
Chef Mitsu is intent on further developing the restaurants he run to gain more recognition among food enthusiasts, but his doing so will always rely first on preparing good food with high quality ingredients as well as providing excellent service – and that’s the experience one is likely to get when dining at Ayodya Resort Bali.