Danish-born Michael Klausen began cooking at the age of 12 and set up a successful catering business as soon as he left school. In his early professional career, Klausen worked with some of the best chefs in Denmark and broadened his culinary experience with several spells in France. Before moving to Australia in 1991, Klausen had already conceived and operated an acclaimed restaurant and hosted a TV cooking program.
After arriving in sydney, Klausen worked with Tony Papas at the Bayswater Brasserie, before opening Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay. He later established the Brasserie Bread Company with Papas, where Klausen remains as CEO.
Klausen and everybody at Brasserie Bread is passionate about the quest to bake true artisan products and over the past 10 years, expert training, skill and a love of great ingredients have come together and Klausen and his team have created Australia’s leading sourdough bakery. Brasserie Bread delivers artisan breads, pastries and cakes 365 days a year to over 300 top restaurants, hotels, cafés and delis across Sydney and the ACT.
In 2005, Klausen opened Brasserie Bread's Bakery Café & retail shop and commenced their hugely popular Free Kids Baking Classes. In 2006, the café was awarded Sydney’s Favourite Café by the Sydney Morning Herald Good Living magazine. In September 2008 a dedicated Artisan Training School was opened, increasing the range of kids baking classes, school excursions and adult baking classes. Brasserie Bread has become a unique destination sought out by chefs, foodies, kids and all lovers of great food.
Peter Kuruvita was born in London, but throughout his life was strongly influenced by his Austrian mother and Sri Lankan father. In 1967, his family moved to Sri Lanka, where he spent his early childhood watching his grandmother create family meals from ancient Sri Lankan spice recipes. This strong sense of family combined with Peter's early association with food has continually inspired him throughout his career.
In 1974, Peter’s family moved to Sydney, where he started a chef apprenticeship at East Sydney TAFE, later studying at new Ryde Catering College. His first job was in the kitchen at seafood restaurant Crabapple. He later worked alongside Greg Doyle at Rogues, at One Star Michelin restaurant Rue St Jacques and then Three Star Michelin restaurant, The Waterside Inn, in England.
In early 1984, Peter took up the Sous Chef position at Neil Perry's new restaurant: Blue Water Grill, before being approached to run the kitchen at Barrenjoey House on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. He later shared the Head Chef role at Bilson’s and then opened his own restaurant Avalon with wife Karen.
In early 2001, Peter took up the Executive Chef role at the internationally acclaimed Hayman Island Resort at Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef, where it was his job to reposition Hayman as a leading resort of the world.
After winning various awards, Peter returned to Sydney in 2003 to launch the Flying Fish. Since then, he has opened Flying Fish Fiji, launched a range of products and a cookbook, and has been a guest chef in many countries.
Kylie Kwong was born into a third generation Australian-Chinese family, in Sydney. She learnt the fundamentals of Cantonese cooking at her mother’s side, and then went on to hone her skills with several of Australia’s most respected chefs. After working at some of Sydney’s finest restaurants – Rockpool, Wockpool and Restaurant Manfredi – Kylie realised her dream of pouring her heart and soul into her own restaurant, billy kwong, in Sydney’s Surry Hills.
Kylie Kwong: Heart and Soul was published in 2003 to coincide with her first TV series which screened in Australia and around the world. Other cookbooks such as Kylie Kwong: Recipes and Stories and Chinese Cooking followed with accompanying television series.
Kylie is an avid supporter of all things pertaining to ethical eating and sustainable living, serving only locally grown, organic and biodynamic produce in her restaurant. Kylie is the ambassador for the Fair Trade Association of Australia and New Zealand, and Billy Kwong was the first restaurant in NSW to become carbon neutral. In 2009 Billy Kwong won the inaugural Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide ‘Sustainability’ award.
For Kylie, food is both a way of life in the present and a link with the past and her family heritage - especially her extraordinary great-grandfather Kwong Sue Duk, who was lured to Australia from his ancestral village in China by the promise of gold. She has said: “By sharing the experiences of my family, I hope to enhance the understanding and appreciation of Chinese culture, particularly... within Australia, and to express my pride in my Chinese heritage.”