Last month, we began a series spotlighting our talented Executive Chefs and other members of the distinguished culinary staff. Continuing the series, we went behind the scenes with Senior Executive Chef Alexis Quaretti this month. Below he shares his favorite culinary destination, his take on The Finest Cuisine at Sea™, his latest dining habits and more.
What made you want to become a chef?
From a very young age, I spent many vacations with my grandmother in the kitchen preparing feasts for our family, always with my Italian grandfather very close by watching over us. It seemed to set the stage for everything that has unfolded.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
A few years ago, I started running during my free time on board and at home. Every vacation, I schedule one race – last November I ran my first marathon! This spring, I also ran a trail race with 42 kilometers in the mountains.
Tell us about your favorite dishes – what have you been eating lately?
As of recently, my diet is very oriented around healthy food. I’m drinking a lot of fruit smoothies and vegetable juice and eating raw vegan food, even if I’m still trying a little bit of everything.
What is your top culinary destination – where you never tire of going to eat, shop at the markets and try new restaurants?
Spain – I appreciate the concept of sharing food as tapas, and the markets are just beautiful.
What does The Finest Cuisine at Sea™ mean to you?
We have premium products, highly skilled chefs, and excellent equipment and galley space to run our daily operation. It means that we are serving superior dishes day after day – what truly makes the difference is the consistency of our high-caliber gourmet cuisine and presentation across the fleet.
About Senior Executive Chef Alexis Quaretti
Chef Quaretti was destined to be a chef. From a very young age, Chef Quaretti spent many vacations with his grandmother in the kitchen preparing feasts for his family. After completing his culinary studies, he later worked under his mentor, Chef David Grandjean, at the Relais et Château restaurant Marçay in the famous Loire Valley wine region. Chef Grandjean introduced Chef Quaretti to Master Chef Alain Passard who was cooking at the three-Michelin-star restaurant L’Arpège in Paris. Several years later, Chef Quaretti met Oceania Cruises’ Culinary Director, Chef Franck Garanger, in Vienna, which led to him joining Chef Garanger at his London venture, Garanger’s. It was Chef Garanger that convinced Chef Quaretti to become a part of the Oceania Cruises family in 2004 where he has proudly been working ever since.