Omri Cohen – Kosher Chef from Tel Aviv

I’m 25 years old, from Israel. I cook kosher quality food that combines local products and home made flavors in an up scale level. All of my gastronomic experience I got from hard work and sweat in many different kitchens. Today I am the head chef of “WEST SIDE” restaurant in Tel Aviv.

Can you tell me about your day at work?
Every single day I come in to the kitchen with a big smile on my face checking and testing the freshly goods. Then I’m checking up with the cooks on today’s tasks and we all starts working and giving our best for the evening service. Every day I try new dishes and trying to teach and enrich my team as much as possible. Towards the evening, the restaurant opens to the public and the FUN begins.

What was the first dish that you’ve done as a chef?
My first dish was for a food competition. The dish was a grouper fish with an eggplant in a different textures, this dish still goes on my menu.

Who is the model for you to follow?
There are a few chefs I take inspiration from:
Chef Eitan Mizrahi – the family environment that he brings to the kitchen is admirable.
Chef Gordon Ramsay – who has a unique passion for food,  this is something every chef needs!

Do you have your dream place where would you like to work?
I would like to build a restaurant on a farm where I grew all the produce and it will be fresh from the ground straight on the  plate.

Do you cook at home?
No, at home I eat mom’s food 🙂

What would you prepared for me in 10 minutes … i mean some food ;-)?
I will cook you a lovely  Israeli Breakfast.

What would like to have as last meal in life?
My Dad’s stuffed spleen.

What flavours you are most faithful?
Cumin seeds, coriander seeds and chili pepper.

What do you think about current trends in gastronomy?
I think it is interesting, that along with the food there is a complete dining experience, I just hope it does not harm the quality of the food.

What was the most important moment in your professional chefs life?
When I cooked lunch for Shimon Peres when he served as the President of the State of Israel.

Do you want to make your children have gone in Your footsteps / chefsteps?
Yes, happily. It is a profession with a lot of self-satisfaction.

Private lives there? How it looks like?
I’m working “nonstop” from Sunday to Thursday, Friday and Saturday I have the time to devote to my family, friends and of course there is a play time “Sony Play-Station” 🙂

What was the funniest situation at the kitchen, is it some fun there?
For sure! Every day there are funny moments in the kitchen, for example, when it’s a cook’s  birthday, we  celebrate by shed  him with  flour, eggs and sugar and make him a human  birthday cake 🙂  everything  we make with love.

What advice do you have for young cooks?
Hard work and patience pays off at the end.

In which country is, in your opinion, the most beautiful/interestig kitchen?
India – Indian cuisine is not ashamed of his bold tastes, each dish has a unique taste.

Photos on your instagram, are so beautiful. Are you doing it ? Is it a long preparation?
Thank you very much. Yes, usually I take the photo of the dishes, straight from the hot line that goes to the customer at the right moment.

Thank you!

photo: Omri Cohen

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