- Lynette FooThe BossLynette FooThe Boss"This 10 year journey has been such a rewarding experience, firstly starting the school from my home and then moving twice to bigger premises. I have seen thousands of participants improve their culinary and baking skills during this period. I am happy that Palate Sensations and the chef instructors continue to shape the changing landscape of Singapore’s culinary scene." Palate Sensations was born in January 2005 after Lynette decided to give up her corporate career in Finance. Lynette’s philosophy on cooking is that it should be fun, simple and fuss free. Lynette believes everyone can cook - it just takes a bit of practice. Lynette holds a Diplome de Cuisine (French Cuisine) and a Thai Cuisine Certificate from Le Cordon Bleu; a Level 3 Raw Food Chef Certification from Pure Joy Culinary Academy, and a Certificate in Asian Pastry from BITC. Lynette was born in Malaysia but grew up in Australia. She studied Chinese in Beijing, graduated with an Accounting degree from University of New South Wales, Australia (courtesy of a scholarship from KPMG) and has an MBA from IMD, Switzerland. Lynette is also a qualified Chartered Accountant and holds an Occupational First Aid Certificate from St John's Ambulance. Lynette exercises 6 days a week, often getting up early in the morning to run, practice yoga and pilates, play tennis and swim.
- Jay SohOperations ManagerJay SohOperations Manager"The reason why I love working at Palate Sensations is because I love watching people cook and the enjoyment that results from it." Jay has worked in virtually every aspect of the F&B industry, rising through the ranks over the past 13 years from waitress to wine executive to restaurant and wine retail manager. In 2006, her passion for fine wines led her to Italy to attend The Italian Trade Tasting and to France in 2007 to attend Union des Grands Crus Tasting de Bordeaux. With her in-depth knowledge and expertise in the F&B industry, she consistently achieves performance goals through enthusiasm, tenacity, passion and initiative. She joins Palate Sensations as Operations Manager to oversee all aspects of its daily operations.
- Brenda ChewExecutive ChefBrenda ChewExecutive Chef"I have a real passion for food and I enjoy cooking mouth watering dishes. I am constantly upgrading my knowledge about new food trends. As Executive Chef at Palate Sensations, I take great pleasure in sharing my culinary and pastry experience and I look forward to having fun in the kitchen." Influenced by her Peranakan grandmother, she was exposed to the sight, taste and smell of spices from an early age. After working in the corporate world for 6 years, she decided to pursue her passion in pastry. She graduated with a Diplome de Patisserie from Le Cordon Bleu and an Advanced Diploma in Hospitality Management from TAFE Institute, Sydney, Australia. She interned at Uccello and Café Sicilia while studying in Australia. Upon graduating from Le Cordon Bleu, she worked as a Pastry Chef at Jamie’s Italian, a restaurant in Sydney by Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver. She was part of the Opening Team responsible for the setup of the restaurant. During the 5 years with Jamie’s Italian, she assisted with the training of new chefs and was appointed Cultural Ambassador for Jamie’s Italian International. During this period, Brenda was exposed to and developed a high level of competency in culinary techniques to compliment her pastry background. Returning to Singapore in 2015, she worked as a Pastry Chef at W Singapore before joining Palate Sensations as Executive Chef. Brenda is in charge of running the culinary and pastry programs and advising the Management Team on strategy and business development.
- Loreta ValdezChef InstructorLoreta ValdezChef Instructor"I have been working at Palate Sensations for 3 years and as a chef instructor, I enjoy teaching participants and working with different guest chefs. It is always fun and lively and there are always many opportunities to taste different types of cuisines and learn new techniques from the guest chefs." Although Loreta holds a Bachelor of Elementary Education from Urdaneta City University in The Philippines, she has always enjoyed working with food. In 2011, Loreta graduated from City & Guilds with a Diploma in Patisserie and followed that up with a Certificate in Asian Pastry Making from BITC. We are pleased to welcome her to Palate Sensations as one of our Chef Instructors focussing on classes for domestic helpers and supporting our Head Instructor in conducting classes. She is also in charge of the management of our kitchen.
- Francois MermilliodFrench CuisineFrancois MermilliodFrench Cuisine"Being a pioneer chef at Palate Sensations, I have had the privilege to see the studio grow from a little-cozy-home like kitchen to a full size-well equipped cooking school. I have met many participants from completely different backgrounds. I have also witnessed so many life changing moments in the studio (some participants met and became couples leading to marriage, some found passion in cooking while some became full time chefs or run their own restaurants) I am just proud to believe that I might have influenced them for their love for cooking." Francois trained at Lenotre school in Paris and the Valhrona School. Over the years, he has developed a penchant for simple, uncomplicated cuisine and incorporating both French and Asian techniques in his cooking and preparation methods. Having honed his craft as Executive Chef at Sanders, a modern Australian restaurant in Sydney, as well as previous stints at Duo restaurant in Club street, Au Petit Salut, Salut, Flutes at the Fort and Absinthe in Singapore, François hopes to entice the local palate with his unique brand of modern French cuisine at his new restaurant Bar-A-Thym. Despite his training in classical French cuisine, François has always been keen to evolve with the times. He said: “French cuisine has changed considerably lately, from typical, earthy dishes using local products to a more cosmopolitan cuisine with new flavours”. Apart from the seasonal produce, François also draws inspiration from his own dining experiences.
- Stephane IstelFrench CuisineStephane IstelFrench CuisineThe culinary mind – and soul – of Bar-Roque is Chef Stephane Istel. Born in Alsace, Chef Stephane has cooked his way across France to the Caribbean, USA, Canada and now Singapore. Chef Stephane has worked with Michel Royer, Marc Veyrat and most recently, with Daniel Boulud, where for more than 8 years he held key positions including that of Executive Chef at DB Bistro Moderne in Vancouver and then in Singapore. Drawing on deep traditional roots, Chef Stephane’s dishes are classic yet powerfully responsive to the times and geography in which he finds himself. As someone who’s cooked for 20 years, Chef Stephane would be the first to say that the dinner table is where people come together to eat, drink, love and live. Needless to say, having the chatty and charismatic Chef Stephane mingle with the guests, wine glass in hand, would undoubtedly be a common sight at Bar-Roque.
- Mercedes Pena KirbyMexican CuisineMercedes Pena KirbyMexican Cuisine"I can see how Mexican food in Singapore, even if popular and acclaimed, lacks authenticity. I enjoy sharing the original, Mexican cuisine to those who would love to experience the real stuff... just as we eat in Mexico." Mercedes was born in Mexico City. Since very young, her main interests have been traveling and exploring new cultures. She believes that the best way to get to know a country is through its food and life styles. She holds a double degree in Accounting and Business Management. During university she studied and lived for one semester in The Czech Republic. This trip, besides being academically enriching was a new cultural experience for her and this is when she realized that getting to know new cultures and therefore their food was a must in her life. Since then, Mercedes became a vivid traveler, exploring her own country, South America and Europe mainly, while enriching one of her main hobbies.. food! Her finance career brought her to Singapore seven years ago where she had the opportunity to explore Asia and embrace the food culture even further. When she was living in Mexico, the central cook at home was her mother who taught her all her secret recipes. In the past seven years, living in Singapore has allowed Mercedes to indulge in and refine her cooking techniques and love for Mexican cuisine. She loves entertaining friends and family and she has been told her Mexican dinner parties are always a big success!
- Alfie MossadegSingaporean CuisineAlfie MossadegSingaporean Cuisine"For me, cooking is an expression of the land where you are and the culture of that place. South East Asian food is very easy to like because it hits your mouth very differently. Compared to European food which may hit 2 flavours such as sweet and salty, Asian food tends to encompass all four flavours (sweet, salty, spicy and sour) all at once." Alfie cooks Singaporean cuisine family style meals fused with flavors from neighboring Southeast Asian Countries - Thailand, Bali and Malaysia. HIs dishes are healthy and packed with fresh herbs, exotic ingredients, and spices with a twist of western influence. He might look badass, but he doesn’t bite although his food is worth every bite. Working in the Singapore Prison as a chef and inmate helped Alfie develop his cooking skills further. Upon his release, he worked for French Chefs Francois Mermilliod from Flutes @ The Fort and Patrick Heuburger from Au Petit Salut which refined his cooking techniques and honed his skills in French Cuisine. In 2010, a friend secretly entered his name for a cooking competition called Chef Selebriti and he placed fourth in the competition amongst the hundreds that had applied. Afterwards, Alfie left for Bali for 4 years to take on the responsibility of head chef in Baba, Huu Bar, a 12 year iconic establishment in Bali for clubbing and fine dining. There, he became known as the “Laksa King”.
- Amelia SekoJapanese CuisineAmelia SekoJapanese Cuisine"I have been teaching at Palate Sensations for 7 years. Within that period, I have strived not just to impart knowledge of authentic Japanese dishes and ingredients but the culture itself. I am ever grateful for all the positive comments from my previous participants. These feedback are a crucial source of motivation and inspiration for me to keep doing what I do." Chef AMELIA SEKO has been whipping up authentic Japanese food from home for the past 18 years. A desire to impart her knowledge and share her passion for the cuisine sees her joining Palate Sensations as a Guest Chef. Having been married to a Japanese and with 3 gourmet food-loving daughters, Amelia only produces the best from her kitchen at her family's insistence. Amelia believes that Japanese food must not only taste good but also be aesthetically pleasing to invoke all senses of umami (うまみ). So come and experience pleasure in this brand new series of classes by AMELIA SEKO, specially designed to tantalise and awaken your palate. Master the finesse of essential Japanese cuisine, with a step-by-step guide and an introduction of must-have ingredients in a Japanese kitchen.
- Low Shih ErhAsian CuisineLow Shih ErhAsian Cuisine"I get a warm fuzzy feeling within when I am given the chance to impart to my students genuine traditional and sometimes long lost Asian cooking techniques and recipes learnt from my mum who much earlier on learnt it from her aunt. I am always in search for the next better recipe for the dishes I teach at Palate Sensations." Some of us were "born to eat" but Chef Low was "born to cook". Well, almost literally since this chef was already helping out in her family's Yellow Light Thai Food restaurant at the tender age of 6. She developed her ability to cook extraordinary Southern Thai dishes from her Thai born mother cum chef and a grand aunt who prepared dishes for the Thai Royal Family. Through the years, Chef Low has further surprised with and elevated the original cuisine she had learnt; integrating her own blend of new creations and twists without losing her ethnic roots and the cuisine's authenticity. Her regional influences and strengths have taken her to food consulting and teaching assignments in Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore. The range of classes vary from instructing first timers in the kitchen to supervising whole teams of kitchen chefs. She is now adept at whipping up popular South East Asian fare ranging from spicy Thai Tom Yum to exotic Penang Laksa to the essential Char Koay Teow, just to name a few. Chef Low was previously a food consultant at George, a restaurant that specialized in serving Penang (Northern Malaysia) cuisine. She currently helms two successful Thai food restaurants in Singapore.
- Kingsley TanAsian CuisineKingsley TanAsian Cuisine"Seeing students completing their dishes after every class with a sense of satisfaction on their face really makes my day. Thats enough to make me stay in the teaching line for the past 5 years." Chef Kingsley Tan graduated from At-Sunrice Global Chef Academy with an Advanced Diploma in Culinary Arts. With 10 years of culinary experience, Chef Tan is trained in both Asian and Western Cuisine. His depth of experience includes 5 star establishments such as The Sentosa Resort & Spa to Korean family restaurant Hansang and Singaporean establishments such as TP125 Coffee Station and Chang Cheng Mee Wah. Chef Tan is currently a Culinary Consultant at Oriental Buds. Chef Tan joins Palate Sensations as a guest chef. He is predominately in charge of providing Singaporean cuisine classes for tourists and cooking enthusiasts alike.
- Rinat ValievRussian CuisineRinat ValievRussian Cuisine"Cuisine from the former Soviet states are still relatively unknown in Singapore, and I want to share the wonderful taste with everyone." Chef Rinat was born and breed in Uzbekistan. Having spent his youth on his family farm in Uzbekistan, Chef Rinat has developed an immense love for experimenting with fresh seasonal produce, creating his own jams, pickles, marinated meats and home-infused vodka made with assorted fresh flowers, fruit and spices. After graduating from Culinary school in Tashent, Uzbekistan, he went on to work in several restaurants. He was invited to Singapore by a friend to open & lead a Russian bistro, Café Lyubi Menya in 2010. After accumulating a wealth of experience helming operations for Cafe Lyubi Menya, Rinat decided to take the leap of faith and open his own – Russkiy Dome – which offered guests an intimate dining experience with his signature Russian and Central Asian comfort food. Since it’s closure, Rinat works as a private chef, bringing his wonderful cuisine to people's homes.
- Kamal ChannaIndian CuisineKamal ChannaIndian Cuisine"With 40 years of experience, I have worked my craft in hotels, fine-dining restaurants as well as hawkers. I now believe that people should be able to take the authentic crafts of North Indian cuisine to their own kitchens without relying on short-cuts and mixes. See you at Palate Sensations." Chef Kamal Kumar Channa is the only Singaporean chef specializing in North Indian cuisine with 37 years' of International experience. He has successfully earned accolades as a chef and a business owner and he understands the needs of the kitchen, manpower management and the economics of being in the food & beverage industry. Upon graduation from Delhi University with a Bachelor’s Degree in The Arts, Chef Channa excelled in a 3-year apprenticeship program with the Indian Tourism Development Corporation, passing in the trade of "Cook General". Fueled by his passion, he learnt skills in various sections such as the pantry, bakery, super-club (western hot kitchen) and production kitchen at the Ashok Hotel in New Delhi. Chef Channa has worked in Calcutta, Jaipur, Hyderabad, Abu Dhabi, Saudi Arabia and Australia. In 1987, he moved to Singapore and worked in hotels. Currently, as a freelance chef instructor for Indian cuisine, Chef Channa enjoys sharing his vast knowledge and international experience in both theory and practical classes to private groups, F&B diploma students and corporate teams.
- Shalu AsnaniVegetarian CuisineShalu AsnaniVegetarian Cuisine"I love teaching as it allows me to help people transition to plant-based eating and open their minds to new ways of eating. I believe in down-to-earth good food, using the best produce and imparting loads of flavor through fresh herbs and spices." Born into a family of great cooks, Shalu was exposed to the art of cooking at a young age and picked up many family secrets along the way, but is constantly reinventing her style to keep things fresh and modern. Her niche is healthy vegetarian cuisine panning all styles – Asian street food to contemporary Western cuisine, and her goal is to disprove the myth that vegetarian food is boring, the dishes she creates are bursting with flavour and tantalising to even the most extreme of carnivores. After a successful stint teaching at a The Hutong school in Beijing, Shalu is back in Singapore and has introduced her creative style of teaching here and has written a comprehensive guide to Singapore vegetarian restaurants. Apart from cooking, her other passion is travelling which she combines with her art by getting inspiration from exciting food around the world, and attending courses overseas to broaden her repertoire. Shalu recently acquired her professional diploma in vegetarian cuisine from Cordon Vert Cookery School in the U.K. which has added a new dimension to her creative cooking skills. Due to her in-depth knowledge and passion for food, Shalu was featured in the Lonely Planet Singapore 2012.
- KarpagamVegetarian CuisineKarpagamVegetarian Cuisine"Being a working mother, I focus on simple cooking using common ingredients in the kitchen and, if possible, with minimum use of utensils. Over time, I’ve learnt the importance of substitution when something is not there. For a vegetarian, well balanced meals throughout the day are key to remain active. My meal plans help me achieve that and I love to share these with everyone."
Karpagam is a food enthusiast with a keen interest in vegetarian cooking. A banker by profession, Karpagam, who always loved cooking and entertaining friends, started her foray into multi-cuisine recipes that are easy to cook.
Karpagam started posting her recipes on Facebook and in a friend’s portal www.bookmyrestaurant.com. The recipes are a result of constant experiments with available ingredients at home and the opportunity to taste recipes from different countries. Her recipes under the category ‘Cooking Under 30 Minutes’ were an instant hit with friends who found them not just easy to follow but also used only a few utensils in the kitchen so clean up was a breeze.
Hereforfood.com, her cookery blog, is the cumulation of this passion for cooking, boosted by testimonies and constant support from friends. Karpagam joins Palate Sensations as a guest chef with a focus on Southern Indian vegetarian cuisine.
- Michele OwWestern CuisineMichele OwWestern Cuisine"Using the freshest ingredients and cooking with classic techniques provides clean flavours which will please the fussiest eater. I would like to impart this to my students at Palate Sensations." Chef Michele has loved food her entire life. She started baking and cooking at age of 14 years old when she moved to Australia. When she returned to Singapore at the age of 24. she worked for the Shipping Industry for 8 years and had the wonderful chance to entertain at many exquisite restaurants around Asia, thereby further enhancing her palate. By the time she married her French husband (with Italian origins), she already had many French and Italian recipes tugged under her sleeve. She also utilized her knowledge gained over the years to merge that into entertaining people across different cultures by introducing origins of classic dishes. Then finally as a mother, she discovered that many Singaporeans (including expats) did not eat home often and therefore 2 years ago, started cooking classes. Her philosophy is to strive for the freshest ingredients, and trust that natural flavours married with passion and the right techniques will always produce the perfect dish.
- Hana MadanatMiddle East CuisineHana MadanatMiddle East Cuisine"My cooking is simple, affordable, yummy and from the heart." Born in Jordan, Hana Madanat remembers spending part of her younger years in the kitchen with her six sisters and mother learning how to cook. Sixteen years ago, she started traveling with her husband, leaving behind her family, her culture, and her mother’s food. She started the search for a taste of home, heading to different Middle Eastern restaurants, but she couldn’t find the authentic taste which is deep in her heart, the taste which could take her back home to her mother's kitchen. She started cooking in her small kitchen, and shared the food she cooked with her family and friends, and now, she would love to share it with more people. [video width="720" height="360" mp4="http://www.palatesensations.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/My-Movie-1.mp4"][/video]
- Amy LeePastry ChefAmy LeePastry Chef"Giving my best in everything I do is what guides me in my career. Sharing knowledge with students to the maximum of my capability is what I strive to do." Chef Amy Lee has been a Baking Instructor for many years. Her portfolio includes SHATEC where she worked as a Production Chef, working with interns to produce & supply for cafés & restaurant outlets; BITC where she provided training to amateurs who were interested to enter the F&B industry; At-Sunrice Global Chef Academy where she coached students in their WSQ Diploma in Pastry & Baking. Amy also spent 3 and a half fruitful years instructing & coaching special needs participants for successful job placements. She has vast experience in pastry and confectionery work. Her experiences include working in 5 star hotels and large scale productions. With her training from Europe, she is able to impart the most authentic skills and knowledge to her students. She first received her diploma in Sous-Chef Patisserie from Culinary Institute, Alain & Marie Lenotre in Houston, Texas. Subsequently, she trained in France with famous Chefs such as Emmanuel Ryon and Gérard Taurin on ice-cream technology. She was the winner for the Cacao Barry Scholarship in 2002. That enabled her to train under Meilleurs Ouvriers de France Thierry Atlan at L'ecole Lenotre and Jean François Castagne for chocolate confectionery and sculptures.
- Nan OngPastry ChefNan OngPastry Chef"If you want to learn how to swim, you jump into the pool. If you want to learn how to drive, get behind the wheel. I believe in learning by doing. Roll up your sleeves and get ready to work individually from scratch. It ain't gonna get more intimate than this!" Baking is creative. Baking is fun. Baking is therapeutic. Baking is a form of art. It is also a form of self-expression. And just like good food and wine, baking brings people together. To different people, baking holds different meanings. For Nan, baking is all the above, and above all, baking is her passion. Through trial and error, and with patience, Nan believes that anyone can bake. With the right ingredients and right tools, cookies, tarts, pies and cakes etc. can be easy and very fun. Of course, its always nice to have the cake and eat it. But Its also equally important and perfectly alright to make mistakes, because it is through the mistakes that we learn and grow. This is also very true in life. Buying and flipping cookbooks has been a hobby since young, until 3 years ago, Nan decided to pursue formal training in patisserie at Le Cordon Bleu, Tokyo. Besides running a design studio and a home-baking business, what Nan also enjoys doing is sharing her baking experience and knowledge with like-minded people.
- Paula TanPastry ChefPaula TanPastry Chef"I take pleasure in seeing great food served on home dining tables." Unrelentless passion for baking since college years away from home in the Canadian allure, and throughout 25 years of raising a family, Paula took her culinary aspiration to greater height at BITC and was trained in various kinds of dough preparation for asian pastries. Her profession as a realtor of 16 years rewarded her numerous flexible hours in the kitchen, experimenting different kinds of pastries recipes she adored. She takes great joy and pride in serving her steam baos, assorted mooncakes , asian breads , huaiyang pastries and straits chinese delicacies to friends and family. Whenever some stolen time endowed on her, she takes pleasure in sharing several of her favourite recipes at her humble blog and Youtube channel @PaulaCookingFingers. For Autumn Festival 2015, she pioneered some new flavoured tea-infused snowskin mooncakes for 1872 Clipper Tea Co and conducted a workshop for their distinguished patrons at their new launch of the Timeless Earl Grey.
- Alvin SinghCocktail MixologistAlvin SinghCocktail Mixologist"Cocktails can be made by anyone and everyone, and I like that you can see an individual's personality in a glass. Here's to alcohol, the rose colored glasses of life." Alvin is the owner of Pocket Bar Concepts, a one stop mobile bar service provider in Singapore. Equipped with our own portable bar and our quirky team of bartenders, we aim to brighten up your event with our services. Intrigued by what goes on behind the bar and into your drink? Let us take you on a learning journey. One part knowledge, one part technique and with equal parts of fun. The workshop will focus on classic cocktails, done right with fresh fruits and ingredients. We will also cover the basic tools of the trade, bartending techniques and how to set up your own home cocktail bar to impress your guests. If we have managed to pique your interest, feel free to drop us a note and we can further discuss how we can bring the tipple to you!
- Hiro NakayamaFragrance SpecialistHiro NakayamaFragrance Specialist
Hiro Nakayama is the Founder and Project Director behind Project Felicia.
She has been a long time collector of perfume yet she came to fragrance as her profession only 10 years ago after her divorce was finalized at the court. During the process, she almost lost her sense of smell. As she walked out, there was a farmers market with flowers and vegetables and she was able to enjoy the fragrance coming from those plants so strongly as if they were expressing themselves. With her wish to share the joy emitted from the fragrance, Hiro founded Project Felicia.
She started serving as a freelance consultant to niche brands, actively participating in fragrance events, and successfully assisted brands to expand their business to international markets.
Hiro wears multiple hats and also serves consumers as a Scent Stylist or Perfume Concierge. She is a Certified Fragrance Sales Specialist by the Fragrance Foundation in New York.
Hiro is a Japanese-American Fragrance Globe-Trotter, a New Yorker, born and raised in Japan but currently residing in Singapore. She enjoys traveling in Asia in search of new fragrance brands and ingredients. She occasionally writes articles in professional magazines.