spotlight on kangaroo island | jack ingram.
jack ingram is the head chef at southern ocean lodge on kangaroo island...we pick his brain about island life...
Name Jack Ingram
Hometown Beaminster, UK (near Dorset)
How long have you been a chef? Since i finished school - since 16 (or at least thats when i started to try)!
What brought you to Southern Ocean Lodge, and when? Originally came here in 2009 for a little bit. I was backpacking around Australia, and worked with the owners (James and Hayley) at Spicers Peak Lodge (near Toowoomba). I was only there a few months and then went back to the UK. When James and Hayley opened Southen Ocean Lodge, they asked if i would come back across. Came here in April 2015 - 7 months ago.
Where were you previously? Melbourne. I become a dual citizen on Wednesday (November)! I worked at Vue de Monde - first at the original site, and then at the Rialto. I also did 18 months at their patisserie/cafe on St Kilda Road, and last year worked for Bistro Vue Monde. Really french orientated, fun, busy.
Describe yourself in 3 words or less: hard working, motivated, relaxed.
Describe Kangaroo Island in 3 words or less: remote, beautiful.
How many people in kitchen? 7 (medium size kitchen - small enough, but not that small).
Do you live here solo? No, i live here with my partner Vanessa (who is also one of the staff). Makes it easier to be in a remote situation when living with a partner.
How do you describe the food here: local, seasonal, honest.
What is your favorite meal to cook for, and why? Dinner, because you can be more creative. A bit more refined. A bit more wheremy training has been. Breakfast and lunch can be fun, but more casual.
How do you come up with the menus? A lot of it is protein-wise, so its kind of done for me. Everything is sourced from here (the island) or south australia. everything we can get, we use. its so seasonal. whatever the suppliers have really. Right now (being Spring) we are loving peas, broadbeans, etc.
Is it difficult working around guests requests? It can get a little frustrating cooking for fussy people, but we can ultimately can get around it ok. its part of what we do we here. allergies are allergies, cant do anything about that. the hardest thing is that some guests don't know what they are - they decide every meal that they don't eat something new!
Positives about living on an island: can save a lot of money. Walk to the beach. Slower pace.
Negatives about living on an island: no internet. A little bit too remote (good and bad thing).
How often do you leave the island? I try to leave every few months. I think you have to to stay sane. Its been 6 weeks now and I'm starting to get itchy feet.
What do you on your days off? Visit local producers. Jog.
What would be your last meal? A piece of meat - beef. simple and classic. really good quality, nicely cooked steak. or a lemon tart.
Which chef is inspiring you right now? A young chef - not much older than me - Leigh Westcott - who opened a new restaurant in london (typing room). He’s doing some really interesting food.
Whats on your stereo? hip hop.
Words you live by / life motto: never be late. hard work.