The executive chef of West 14th steakhouse, Clive Pereira, has been named Gastronomic Superstar at the inaugural Leaders in Hospitality Awards, on top of an impressive shortlisted of talented chefs from around the some of the beating several worthy candidates to clinch the title.
Pereira, who was recently appointed to the high profile role, was recognised for his culinary talent, which included a total revamp of the menu at the popular Manhattan style grill and bar. He triumphed over tough competition from fellow professionals Suzi Massetti of Masso at The Palace Boutique Hotel, Bahrain and Ryan Wadell, head chef at The Black Lion at Dubai’s H Hotel to win the accolade.
Judge Daniel During, principal and managing director, Thomas Klein International said: “We had some fantastic candidates in this category but Pereira stood out for his ability to deliver such a marked impact in a relatively short space of time. The award was designed especially to recognise a culinary raising star who is consistently challenging the norm and Pereira’s creative ideas for new dining concepts and dishes that produced tangible results encapsulated everything the judges were looking for.”
The annual award ceremony, hosted by Hotel News ME, took place at the St. Regis Dubai on 19 April and was attended by more than 200 industry figures. Overall, there were 19 categories covering all aspects of the hospitality industry.
“We received hundreds of nominations and the standard of the competition was incredibly tough, which demonstrates the strength of the industry across the Middle East at the moment. To beat such stiff competition shows how highly regarded Clive is across the industry,” said Sophia Soltani of BNC Publishing, organiser of the awards.
During his short tenure at West 14th, which is located at the Oceana Beach Club on Palm Jumeirah and is under the management of the soon-to-open DUKES Dubai hotel, Pereira has spearheaded a number of innovations that have resulted in significant business growth.
Among his achievements include an additional 228 covers generated by the new Friday BBQ Brunch; 42 new diners thanks to the introduction of the Sunday Roast Beef Night promotion; and an amazing 705 additional covers at the Arabic Saturday Brunch.
“The quality of food at West 14th has always been exceptional and being able to put a personal stamp on what is already a hugely successful product is a privilege. I am honoured to receive this award and look forward to taking the restaurant to the next level in the coming months,” said Pereira.
Pereira previously worked with Michelin-starred chef Gary Rhodes and his new menu is a celebration of high quality ingredients and classic preparations, with mouthwatering dishes such as Wagyu beef cheek, T-bone steak, chicken and mushroom pie, smoked salmon plate and Cornish crab cake. Dessert has also been given an overhaul with new sweet delights including apple and rhubarb crumble and lemon meringue pie.
Judged by an independent jury of high profile industry players, this year’s expert panel included Daniel During, principal and managing director, Thomas Klein International; Rabih Feghali, director, Roya International Hospitality and Leisure Consultants; Ali Manzoor, associate partner, Knight Frank; Rupprecht Queitsch, CEO and founder, INHOCO Group; Marianne Saulwick, industry liaison director, Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management; Gaurav Sinha, founder and CEO, Insignia Worldwide; and Filippo Sona, director and head of hotels MENA for Colliers International.
Abdulla Bin Sulayem, CEO, Seven Tides, developer of DUKES Dubai, commented: “This is the first accolade for West 14th under the management of the DUKES Dubai team and we are proud of what Clive has achieved. His passion for excellence mirrors the values of the DUKES brand and his endeavours will provide the perfect inspiration to all of our management and staff as we near the opening of Palm Jumeirah’s most unique luxury hotel.”
West 14th is open from 9am to midnight, seven days a week, and offers lunch through to 3pm and dinner from 6pm. The contemporary, open-plan, loft-inspired layout of the restaurant attracts diners looking for a stylish setting in which to sample the best steaks from around the world, as well as seasonally inspired dishes for those looking for something different. The bar element is popular in its own right, known for its delicious cocktails and mocktails, plus amazing views, complimented by a great selection of spirits, fresh mixers and shisha. Dining tables fit from two to 16.