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In the Best of Taste

Chef Teuku Kelana Champions Indonesian Cuisine as Executive Chef of Swiss-Belhotel Rainforest, Kuta, Bali

(2/27/2013) Prior to traveling to Bali as part of the pre-opening team at the Swiss-Belhotel Rainforest, Kuta in August 2012, executive chef Teuku Kelana had already established a distinguished track record as maestro of the Indonesian and international kitchen.

Born in Lhokseumawe Aceh in 1968, Teuku earned a culinary arts degree from the Sahid Tourism Academy in 1990 before landing his first job in the Hyatt Aryaduta in Jakarta. A determined professional, he quickly earned his stripes and a reputation for hard work and innovation, working his way through the ranks in the garde manger, banquet kitchen, coffee shop kitchen and finally in the well-regarded "Ambiente" Italian Fine Dining Restaurant.

In 1991, Chef Kelana assumed the job of chef de partie in the Seafood Terrace Coffee Shop at the Grand Hyatt Jakarta. In November 1996, The Sheraton Bandara at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport beckoned, and the talented North Sumatran became their executive sous chef, helping that hotel earned corporate recognition for “the best food quality in the Asia Pacific” in 2001. While at the Sheraton, Chef Kelana’s no-nonsense approach to quality control and procedural efficiency saw food costs reduced by 35% while at the same time earning high scores for service and food excellence from diners.

A top position as executive chef awaited Teuku at the Lido Aryaduta in Sukabumi in November 2002 where he proved himself both a talented chef and an inspired administrator by introducing new menus and a systematic approach to quality and cost control.

Passionate about food and eager to share his cooking skills, during his time at the Lido Aryaduta, Teuku earned the title of “Super Chef” on a nationally televised program “Allez Cuisine.

Leaving Sukabumi and returning to Jakarta in July 2003, Chef Kelana became executive sous chef at the Crowne Plaza before joining the Ambhara Hotel as executive chef in October 2006.

In 2007, chef Teuku Kelana returned to familiar ground at the Aryaduta Hotel Jakarta, a former employer eager to welcome him back as their executive sous chef.

In 2008 chef Kelana was credited with creating the Cardamon Buffet in the fine dining Asiatic Restaurant at Grand Indonesia mall where he worked concurrently as general manager and executive chef.

In recent years he has helped host Resto Sedap on Global TV; cooked with foreign ambassadors from Croatia, New Zealand, Austria, Norway, Pakistan, South Africa, Argentina and Sweden on Metro TV; served as guest chef on Master Chef with RCTI;  appears on a monthly basis as a guest chef on the METRO TV 8-11 show; and recently published his own Indonesian cookery book “Padu Padan Ala Chef” containing more than 150 recipes.

Chef Kelana serves as national secretary general of the Indonesian Chef Association (ICA).

A busy father of three children who enjoys reading and sports, Chef Kelana is enjoying his latest assignment at on the Island of the Gods in charge of the kitchens at the Swiss-Belhotel Rainforest, Kuta including the renowned Oak Restaurant that has quickly earned a reputation for its outstanding local cuisine.