Chef's Talk

Chef Sasha Phoomcharoen

Chef Sasha Chef-Owner Hybrid Restaurant Bangkok Talks to TOP25 RestaurantsChef Sasha Phoomcharoen, the talented Chef/Owner of HYBRID Restaurant in Bangkok, embarked on her culinary journey within the vibrant kitchen of her mother in Thailand. Driven by an insatiable passion for gastronomy, she ventured to the prestigious Italian Chef Academy School in Rome, emerging as the top graduate of her class. Over the span of a decade, Chef Sasha immersed herself in the intricacies of Italian cuisine, honing her craft in a traditional Italian household and developing a profound respect for locally sourced, artisanal ingredients. Guided by the expertise of Italy's culinary maestros, her journey culminated in a prestigious stint at the illustrious Roma Cavalieri Waldorf Astoria's La Pergola Restaurant, led by the esteemed Chef Heinz Beck, the only three Michelin stars in Rome.

Was your decision to become a chef conscious or did you fall into it?

From an early age, the aroma of my mother's kitchen and the joy she brought to our meals ignited a deep passion within me. It wasn't just about the ingredients; it was about creating moments and memories through food. The excitement of experimenting with flavours and the satisfaction of seeing others enjoy my creations made me realize that becoming a chef isn't just a career choice for me; it's a calling born out of a genuine love for the art of cooking." and when I see the smiles of guests leaving Hybrid restaurant with happiness. It brings me a sense of completeness and joy.

What are some emerging food trends that you’re noticing?

Plant-based alternatives, sustainable and locally sourced ingredients, and global flavours. Additionally, there was a growing interest in fermentation, unique food & wine pairings, non-alcohol pairing and experiential dining.

What’s an emerging ingredient that you’re using a lot of these days?

In the heart of Hybrid, where the modern Thai cusine meets Italian tradition and flair, our kitchen is alive with the passionate dance of flavors. Emerging ingredients is something we do daily. One of my favorite combinations is lemongrass & parmiaggiano regiano.

It’s fascinating and inventive twist, bridging the vibrant, citrusy notes of Thai with the rich, savory elements of Italian. This unexpected pairing adds a layer of complexity to my style of flavoring.

What would you cook at home if you were just making a laid-back dinner?

A laid-back dinner could feel like a big festival for no reason hahaha. We enjoyed having good Italian dishes, simple pasta with quality products, along with a good bottle of wine. My partner and I love to eat. We don’t compromise for our laid-back dinner. Every time we get together it’s a moment of celebration.

Is there one dish that sums up your style?

My signature dish on Hybrid menu "Fish In A Can" Thai San Marzano tomato risotto, lemongrass, kaffir lime, 24 aged months parmesan topped with swordfish carpaccio. It's a soulful expedition back to my childhood time. This dish was soothing the ache of missing my homeland, especially during my time in Italy. Each ingredient carries the essence of home of both countries, wrapping me in a comforting embrace. In the kitchen, I don't just cook; I weave memories, flavours, and emotions into a tapestry that transcends distance, bringing the warmth of home to wherever I am.

What do you think the most important qualities are in an aspiring chef?

Mentality, personality, and cares about others well-being.

What's the best advice you've ever been given?

If your dream doesn’t scare you, dream bigger!

What is the best lesson you learned in Italy?

In the heart of Rome, amidst the enchanting cobblestone streets and the scent of freshly baked bread lingering in the air, I discovered the most profound lesson of my life. It wasn't just about mastering the art of cooking or perfecting the delicate balance of flavours; it was about finding the courage to chase my dreams against all odds.

As a woman and a young mother at the age of 22 years old at that time, the path to becoming a chef seemed like an insurmountable mountain, daunting and unforgiving. Yet, in the bustling kitchens of Italy, I found solace in the sizzle of pans and the rhythmic dance of ingredients coming together. It was my tiny kitchen at home in Rome, that I learned that my passion for cooking. Every chop of the knife, every swirl of the spoon, became a testament to my resilience and determination. I fought not only for myself but for every woman who dared to defy convention and carve her own path in the culinary world. The heat of the kitchen mirrored the fire within me, burning bright with the desire to prove that motherhood and ambition could coexist harmoniously.

Through the laughter and the tears, Italy taught me the invaluable lesson of perseverance. It whispered in the aroma of simmering sauces and whispered through the clinking of wine glasses, reminding me that dreams are not confined by age, gender, or circumstance. And as I stand here, a testament to the journey I've had, I know that Italy will forever hold a special place in my heart. For it was there, amidst the rolling hills in summer and sun-kissed vineyards in autumn, that I found the courage to embrace my passion and pursue my dreams fearlessly.

Chef Sasha Chef-Owner Hybrid Restaurant Bangkok Talks to TOP25 Restaurants

More about About Chef Sasha and Hybrid Cuisine & Wine Bar V2

From the bustling markets of Thailand to the rustic kitchens of Italy, Chef Sasha Phoomcharoen brings a world of culinary experience to your table. Starting her gastronomical journey in her mother's kitchen, Chef Sasha's love for food led her from her homeland to the prestigious Italian Chef Academy School in Rome, where she graduated top of her class.

Chef Sasha fine-tuned her culinary craft at home during her decade-long immersion in an Italian household, which further shaped her culinary philosophy, developing a profound respect for homegrown, artisanal ingredients. Furthermore, under the guidance of Italy's renowned culinary masters, including Michelin- starred Noda Kotoro and Massimo Blasone, she also participated in events with the most famous Italian chef Carlo Cracco, and her last stint in Rome was at the prestigious Roma Cavalieri Waldorf Astoria at La Pergola Restaurant under Chef Heinz Beck, the only 3 Michelin star restaurant in Rome.

Answering the call of her roots, Chef Sasha returned to Thailand, infusing her newfound knowledge into the dishes in Peninsula Hotel at Thiptara Restaurant. The management of Thiptara restaurant, impressed by Chef Sasha's innovative menu and culinary expertise, agreed to undergo a transformation from a traditional to a contemporary Thai dining experience under her guidance. Today, Chef Sasha stands at the helm of Hybrid Restaurant. The restaurant's name, Hybrid, was inspired by Chef Sasha's innovative menu, which is a union of two diverse cultures and ingredients. It features select, high-quality Thai products prepared using Italian techniques she mastered while living abroad yet retains the distinct and refined flavors of Thai cuisine. In Chef Sasha's words, "Hybrid symbolizes the melding of two superior culinary styles, crafting flavorful dishes that each have their own unique narrative."

Chef Sasha's culinary vision for Hybrid, influenced by her Thai heritage and her extensive culinary experiences in Italy, combines flamboyant flavors from both cuisines, creating a truly unique concept in the Thai fine dining scene.

The name Hybrid holds a meaning that reflects the harmonious blend of two distinct culinary traditions. It represents the union of the finest products, flavors, techniques, and cultural influences that come together to create a unique and extraordinary dining experience. The name signifies the coming together of different worlds, celebrating the diversity and richness of culinary heritage.

Chef Sasha invites you to embark on a gastronomic journey that blends love for the freshest products, passion, and environmental consciousness wrapped in a harmonious blend of Siamese delicacies and vibrant Italian cuisine.