Curtis Ogata

Jo McGarry
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Friday - June 25, 2005 Share | | podcast Podcast |

Executive Sous Chef Sheraton Waikiki, Ocean Terrace


First professional cooking job?
I worked at St. Francis Hospital as a dietary aide when I was 16 years old.

Who has influenced you most in your cooking career?
There are so many individuals, but a few names stand out. The first is Martin Wyss, who was the executive chef when I was working at the Kahala Hilton. Also, Albert Schnell, who was the corporate chef for Hilton Canada. Lastly, executive chefs Phillipe Padovani and George Mavro from my days at the Halekulani were extremely influential.

Favorite dish at your own restaurant?
I love our holiday/special menus. We go above and beyond for these custom buffets. I also enjoy our misoyaki butterfish from our ala carte menu and breakfast buffet (Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday).

Favorite dish at another Hawaii restaurant?
Alan Wong’s Ginger Crusted Onaga. I also enjoy frequenting Chai’s Island Bistro.

What’s always in your fridge?
Milk and foods my kids like.

Favorite late night snack?
I don’t snack late at night, but I enjoy potato chips and popcorn.

Who would you most like to cook dinner for (living or dead)?
I love cooking for my family.

What ingredient can you not live without?
Love. You need to have passion and love for cooking to be a successful chef.

How would you describe your cooking?
To keep up with current trends, I combine classical, Pacific Rim and Hawaii flavors in my signature dishes. My local roots are also demonstrated in my dishes.

Describe your restaurant to someone who hasn’t been there before.
The Ocean Terrace offers highquality service and food with a million-dollar view. It is right on Waikiki’s white sand with Diamond Head in the background. It is a great place for family gatherings or a romantic dinner.

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