Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Sunday (Maroochydore, Australia)

Lindsey a Chef of Many Hats Less-Is-More Style; between Organising Celebrity Buffets and Helping to Manage a World-Renowned Resort, Lindsey Palmer Makes Multi-Tasking Look Easy, Writes Shirley Sinclair

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Sunday (Maroochydore, Australia)

Lindsey a Chef of Many Hats Less-Is-More Style; between Organising Celebrity Buffets and Helping to Manage a World-Renowned Resort, Lindsey Palmer Makes Multi-Tasking Look Easy, Writes Shirley Sinclair

Article excerpt

LINDSEY Palmer used to concern himself with counting, weighing and measuring ingredients.

But now he is a numbers man in a different game.

At age 14-and-a-half, he became an apprentice chef at The Four Seasons Hotel in Toowoomba, after growing up in awe of his mother and grandmother's cooking skills ("I was always the kid that wanted to grab the beater and mix things").

His love of food was enhanced on his arrival on the Sunshine Coast in the mid-90s -- via Perth and Launceston.

He became catering manager at the Alex Surf Club, executive chef at the Nambour RSL and catering manager at the Maroochydore Surf Club.

Then in his next role as Hamilton Island Resort executive chef, he was responsible for 12 restaurants and a team of 90 chefs and 30 stewards.

He also specialised in high-end and special events over more than six years in the job.

He catered for banquets for up to 1000 people during Hamilton Island Race Week and other major tourism functions, and took control of the logistics associated with former television queen Oprah Winfrey's Whitehaven Beach lunch -- the first event on her Down Under tour -- which required two months of planning.

He looks back on the Oprah experience fondly, describing it as "probably my most successful but hardest event I've ever had to put together".

Liaising with celebrity chef Curtis Stone in Los Angeles and Oprah's production crew in California, Lindsey's team had to create an ice bar and seafood buffet on the beach with no generators or refrigeration -- in December -- and had the added challenge of handling the tides, with all the equipment and ingredients in boats moored offshore.

His 25 chefs, who had put in 18-hour shifts for the 10 days leading up to the big event, had to arrive at daylight and prepare everything for her 1pm arrival with her entourage and audience members.

And every plated dish had to be perfect.

"It was stressful," Lindsey said, understating the situation.

"It was a full daylight-to-dark experience."

While Lindsey still calls Currimundi home, his latest role is executive assistant manager for Outrigger on the Lagoon on Fiji's Coral Coast.

The Pacific island nation is just over three hours away by plane but a world away from Australia, in many respects, and just as challenging as anything he has ever done.

On December 1, Lindsey celebrated two years in his new role and 40 years to the month that he began working in the hospitality industry.

But rather than rest on past achievements, he has just enjoyed his third Christmas in Fiji and looks forward to the challenges of 2015.

His eyes light up as he spoke of the joy he experienced last year when the Outrigger on the Lagoon team distributed 120 food hampers to patients and staff at the Sigatoka Hospital in the company of Santa and the resort choir, before the man in the red suit turned Pied Piper and gave away 1000 books, gifts and lollies to the children of the town. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.