Chef ArChan adopted her love for food from a young age, watching her grandmother prepare each meal bursting with flavours and most importantly a desire to nurture, connect and share precious moments with her family over food. Torn between cooking and social work, it was her childhood love of food that eventually swayed her decision. After her studies and a placement in the JW Marriott kitchens while studying at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, she found cooking came naturally, despite the labour-intensive schedule.
ArChan moved to Melbourne in 2008 to pursue a degree in culinary management at William Angliss Institute. Throughout her time in Australia and to complement her formal training, she secured incredible stages at some of the best restaurants in Australia such as Attica, Acme, Automata, Quay and Six Penny, giving her an opportunity to meet new Chefs, exchange ideas, inspirations and noteworthy trends.
As a result of her exposure to invaluable culinary techniques through academic and practical experiences, ArChan was hired by Australian icon, Andrew McConnell to helm the bar menu at the Two Hat Cutler & Co. Still under Chef McConnell’s stewardship, she moved to Golden Fields as chef de partie, working her way up to sous chef before working at Supernormal. After five years in Melbourne, she further expanded her exposure by joining Moon Park in Sydney. She was invited back to Melbourne by McConnell and appointed head chef at Ricky & Pinky. This partnership marked her seventh year with the McConnell Group. Australia, according to the Chef, educated her to be produce-focused, and trained her mind to think not only about cooking but also her responsibility as a chef.
ArChan is also a Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) certified sommelier. The goal of this course however was to help train, develop and improve her palate further. This journey, she says, gave her a deeper appreciation of the nuances of flavours and her relationship with food.