Food and drink

Chef Hugo Balanos on exceptional events and giving back

April 27, 2018

Hotel Bel-Air’s Visiting Chef Series with Wolfgang Puck has been named one of the best chef series in the world. With more events on the horizon, we asked executive chef Hugo Bolanos about the most memorable ones and raising money for charity. Here’s what he had to say.

Creative cooking

It’s wonderful how popular our Visiting Chef Series has become. We’re fortunate to have another stellar line up of outstanding chefs with delicious dishes to share. These events are a real experience for me too, there’s an extra level of excitement in the kitchen and I’m influenced and inspired by unusual ingredients and different cooking techniques.

Something to celebrate

When we heard we had been named one of the best chef series in the world, the team was delighted. We’re we surprised? Well, when you have hosts including three Michelin-star chef Daniel Humm from New York’s Eleven Madison Park, whose restaurant has been voted the best in the world by Worlds 50 Best Restaurants, it’s going to create a stir.

Wanting to make a difference

Our love of entertaining in style means even more to us when we can raise money for charity. Following a spate of natural disasters last year in the Caribbean, Gulf Coast, Florida and Mexico, my team felt determined to find a way to help. Working in the kitchen we were particularly aware that many of the people producing the ingredients for the restaurant menu were being affected by the disasters, as well as many of our own family and friends.

Raising money for charity

Having chatted to Wolfgang Puck about our desire to help, he contacted a host of the finest chefs in and around Los Angeles. Together we held a benefit dinner that raised over $78,000 for the Global Giving Fund. I’m so proud of the team and remember saying to them to go home and tell their families with pride what they had achieved. We now regularly work with Chefs to End Hunger, a charity providing meals to the hungry by redistributing the excess prepared food that would normally go to waste. It’s another great reason to come to one of our upcoming events.

Highlights from last year’s summer BBQ

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Hotel Bel-Air

A hidden sanctuary amongst the wooded hills, untouched by the clamour of life beyond the gates of Bel-Air. The most quintessentially private and exclusive hotel, delivering fragrant elegance since 1946.

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