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Richard Lovett – Chef Extraordinaire

My compliments to the chef! I enjoyed a lovely Russian Salad at Cariblue restaurant last night – diced potatoes and vegetables bound in low fat mayonnaise and topped with a soft poached egg, beetroot and light herb dressing (just describing it makes me hungry all over again!). I slipped into the kitchen to find out who was the mastermind behind this simple yet exquisite appetizer (yes, this was only the appetizer!).

Richard Lovett is the Executive Chef at The BodyHoliday and I am his newest fan. I whipped up the nerve to follow him into his office in the main kitchen because I want to find out about “the man behind the great food”. I learnt that Richard had taken the culinary helm four months ago. Interestingly enough, he was previously employed as the Director of Catering for Sunswept Resorts (parent company of The BodyHoliday). He felt the need to be directly involved in the kitchen’s production and output. Why? Richard is a man who simply loves cooking!

The more I spoke with him the clearer it became to me that he really has a passion for food and cooking. His approach to cooking takes him deeper than just appearances. He looks past this and ensures that the texture, flavour and aroma are en par with the appearance. Proudly, he remarks that in the past four months, he has completely changed the menu. Freshness and quality of ingredients are at the top of his list. Of course I completely agree with this – but what do I know about cooking?!

I mean it is one thing to look at a dish that seems near perfect and then to experience the disappointment that comes from an epic let down in the flavour department. Chef has complete control over this – he visits the local market often to hand pick fresh, local organic ingredients for his dishes. All of the yummy breads and pastries are made by the Pastry department…good job guys!

And what of themed lunches? This is his idea to mix it up and take his guests on a culinary adventure to keep lunch varied and not boring. That’s actually a really good idea and many of the guests I’ve spoken with concur!

The beautiful thing about this resort is that you can enjoy healthy options when you need to and indulge the other heavenly pleasures when you want to. I can attest to that! Incidentally, Richard tells me that The BodyHoliday welcomes many guests with special dietary requirements, requests and food allergies as well. This man goes above and beyond to meet these needs. He reminisces about the ‘Raw Food Diet’ where one of his guests could not have food heated above 65°C. He did his research and successfully accommodated her. I like the fact that he constantly updates and increases his knowledge of food and food trends!

Till we meet again chef…I think I need to get a Chocolate Fondant now!