A day in the life of a Superyacht chef

What does a charter day look like for a Superyacht chef? Sharon Rose sits down with Chef Dean to discuss his life onboard and his role as judge for our new chef photo competition sponsored by Gourmet Deliveries.

By Sarah Smith-Garrison • 21 July 2021

Superyacht Chef Competition

We celebrated 10 years of our Superyacht Chef Competition in 2019, and we’re excited to hopefully invite you all back to the Monaco Yacht Club in 2022.
Until then, we want to celebrate yacht chefs all over the world with a chef photo competition!

Head Chef Dean on M/Y ARIENCE

We are delighted to welcome Head Chef Dean Harrison, from M/Y ARIENCE, as our judge for the photo competition.

Sharon Rose, our recruitment specialist for galley roles, spends five minutes talking to Dean about his career and what being a chef in the superyacht industry is really like…

About the photo competition

Gourmet Deliveries and Bluewater would like to celebrate all the hard working chefs on board this summer.

Please send your food pics to us!
Email them to events@bluewateryachting.com.
You can also tag @Bluewater_crew and @gourmet-deliveries on Instagram.
Hashtag #bluewaterlife and we’ll enter you into the competition.

Prizes to be won
The winner will receive some goodies including a luxury champagne hamper from Gourmet Deliveries, or voucher equivalent to spend on produce of your choice, plus a special goody bag and be featured in our 2022 Bluewater calendar.

There is also the opportunity to have your pics displayed on our Monaco Yacht Show exhibition stand.

Thanks for joining us Dean & for being our judge!

What are you up to at the moment?

I’m currently on rotation back home in Noosa, Australia after a few years away.

Really enjoying being back this time exploring the incredible produce Australia and this region has to offer.

I also have an exciting project I am filming while I’m back here that I hope to announce soon!

Your start in culinary training was a tough one with some very difficult experiences

How did you eventually move in to yachting?

Yes it was! As a 15 year old coming into the kitchen in the days of the Gordan Ramsey chefs was very daunting and hard.
After completing my apprenticeship I started my career on a dive boat on the great barrier reef cooking for up to 50 guests.
That was when I knew I wanted to work on bigger and better yachts!

What does a typical charter day look like for you?

Charter days are just one big blur of feeding guests and crew continuously.

You get up around 5-6am, an hour or so before the guests to start prepping breakfast, then you wait for the orders to come in.

Whilst you start prepping for the guests and crew lunch, I also start the dinner prep, so you can try and fit in that mystical break during the 16 hour day.
Which doesn’t happen too often!

Is there anything you know now, you wish someone had told you before starting?

Oh yeah! So many things I wish I had known.

Setting up a good tax and financial strategy is major one for me.
As yacht crew, we are in an incredible position to have a life where everything is paid for so it’s a great time to save money, especially when you may not be in the industry forever.
It’s also a real grey area for yachties, finding something for crew from all over the world, to suit their country of residence.
Do your research and be organised with your finances.

What’s your favourite part of being a Head Chef on a yacht?

Having a sous chef is such a game changer after being a sole chef for so long.
I love bouncing around ideas and having someone to back you up which is always a bonus!

What’s the most difficult part?

The most difficult part is also the most amazing. Provisioning!

Especially for long trips for over 30 guests and crew, it really is a game of tetris and days of planning to make sure you have everything you need for what the guests throw at you!

What’s next on your agenda?

Unfortunately I had to cancel a yacht chef Q&A during my quarantine in Australia.
I will be organising one in the future to answer all your chef and yachting related answers, keep an eye on my Instagram page for details.

Thank you so much for sharing your story Dean, and for judging our chef photo comp, we’re excited to receive the entries!
A winner will be chosen on Monday 13 September.

To read Dean’s full experience, story and advice for yacht chefs, check out his website.

Chef comp entries

You must be onboard a yacht this Summer working as a chef.

Your photos can be of you in the galley, preparing meals, cooking, or your finished product on the table ready for your guests.

Dean, Sharon and the team at Gourmet Deliveries look forward to receiving your submissions.

You can send them to Bluewater or tag @Bluewater_crew and @gourmet-deliveries on Instagram with the hashtag #bluewaterlife and we’ll enter you into the competition.