Chef Adam D’Sylva may live in town but he is a Peninsula boy at heart. Heading to Rosebud every weekend and holidays with family and friends for more than 40 years since he was a kid, Adam now brings his wife Lauren and their three young kids Ava, Javier and Olivia to the pristine shores of the Peninsula to continue the tradition.
Adam explains: “I’ve always loved the water and used to spend most of my time boogie boarding at the back beaches on the Peninsula well before we had our own kids. It’s too rough for them, being so young, so we usually go to McCrae beach because it’s really safe. My life is very busy running two restaurants, so I take any opportunity to head down to Rosebud with the family or to play a round of golf at the National Golf Club in Cape Schanck, where I’ve been a member for about 20 years. I drive down every week to play golf and then head back to work. I’ve got lots of friends who have houses on the Peninsula because it’s so beautiful and so close to town. It’s ideal.”
This head chef of Asian and European-influenced Coda and Indian restaurant Tonka has just spent four weeks over the holidays in Rosebud. He continues: “There’s nothing better than playing an early round of golf, getting down to the beach with the kids, then coming home for a big cook-up on the barbecue with family and friends. I grew up in Templestowe in a mixed Indian/Italian family so have both influences and remember watching my nonna make gnocchi. I loved eating the raw dough. My kids like to eat Italian at home and love my gnocchi bolognaise. They also love my mashed potato with lots of garlic.”
Adam’s cheffing apprenticeship began at Hilton on the Park. He then moved on to Cosi in South Yarra, travelled across Europe and Asia and upon returning worked at Pearl Restaurant in Melbourne. You may have seen him on various cooking shows, including MasterChef too. Throughout all of this he has remained true to Rosebud and his Peninsula holiday roots.
“It’s hard work but I’m lucky to have made a career out of cooking. I work a lot and really look forward to the breaks on the Peninsula. My mum spends at least half of her time in Rosebud too.”
Adam has also done a couple of guest cheffing gigs on the Peninsula and loves sampling the local produce too. Naturally.