Ashish Bhatnagar, Head Chef

Ashish Bhatnagar has always been interested in cooking, his curiosity for new flavours combined with advancing his professional skills has led him to his current role as Head Chef at White & Wong’s in Auckland.

Born in New Delhi, India where Ashish says, “The food changes every 200km in India, it always surprises me to see so many different varieties of regional dishes.” His career in cooking started straight out of school, Ashish studied at IHM, a hospitality institute in Delhi, where he gained a B.Sc in Hospitality and Level 5 diploma is professional cookery. He entered the hospitality industry and gained hands-on experience that helped to develop his passion and hunger for cooking.

Ashish travelled to London, where he was immersed in a new world of food, “When I went to London it was an eye-opener, you could experience food from all around the world. I found that the cuisine on offer was at the top of its game, using local, fresh produce.”

With these influences in mind, Ashish moved to New Zealand in 2010 and developed his own personal approach to cooking along the way. He says, “I like to keep my cooking local and fresh.

Since arriving in New Zealand, Ashish has worked in some of New Zealand’s well known eateries, Duxton/Amora Hotel, ROXY, Everybody’s, Wine Chambers, Botswana butchery, Harbourside and currently he is Head Chef at White + Wong’s.