Peter Kuruvita was born in London, UK in October 1963. From a very young age a range of rich cultures inspired Peter; his childhood memories are filled with the collaborative influences of his Austrian mother and Sri Lankan father.
In 1967, Peter’s family moved to his father’s hometown of Colombo, Sri Lanka where life was very colourful through the eyes of a young child. Peter vividly recalls his grandmother’s primitive kitchen – “There was no gas or electricity, just a simple wood stove.”
Growing up in Sri Lanka, Peter spent his early childhood alongside his grandmother watching and preparing family meals created from ancient Sri Lankan spice recipes that had been passed down from earlier generations. 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 Australia, where he commenced high school and elected to study home economics. Upon completing his studies Peter followed his passion and started a chef apprenticeship at East Sydney TAFE. He later moved over to complete his final year at the new Ryde Catering College.
Peter’s first working role was in the kitchen at Crabapple, a local seafood restaurant located in the southern Sydney suburb of Mortdale where he remained until 1981 and then moved over to complete his studies and gain further experience working alongside Greg Doyle, at the very fashionable Rogues restaurant & nightclub, where he worked for the next two years.
Upon completing his apprenticeship in 1982, Peter took up a role in the commis chef position at the One Star Michelin restaurant: Rue St Jacques. Following, Peter secured a chef role working alongside the Roux brothers at the Three Star Michelin restaurant: The Waterside Inn, Bray England.
In early 1984, took up the sous chef position at Neil Perry’s new restaurant: Blue Water Grill, at Bondi Beach. Following a triumphant twelve months in this position Peter was approached by Michael McMahon to run the kitchen at the renowned Barrenjoey House, Palm Beach, during his leadership the restaurant was awarded a Sydney Morning Herald One Chef Hat rating.
Mid 1988, Tony Bilson launched his new restaurant Bilsons at Circular Quay and for the first few months Peter shared the head chef role, prior to taking up the executive chef position for the following 6 ½ years. Throughout Peter’s stint at Bilsons the restaurant received a Sydney Morning Herald Two Chef Hat rating.
In 1997 Peter and his wife Karen moved back to Sydney and opened their own restaurant – Avalon at Bondi. This small neighbourhood restaurant served up an inspiring range of modern Australian meals to the locals of Sydney, for the next two years.
In 1999 Peter was recruited as the executive chef/food & beverage manager at the All Seasons Hotel, Darling Harbour. Peter worked in this position up until the end of 2000. Later he accepted a consultancy chef position at the Kupu Kupu Barong Resort, Bali.
In early 2001 Peter took up the executive chef role at the internationally acclaimed Hayman Island Resort, Great Barrier Reef – Queensland, Australia. Peter’s brief on accepting this position was to reposition Hayman, not only as a leading resort of the world, but to increase the profile of the nine food and beverage resort outlets and deliver this five-star luxury resort as a leading food and wine destination.
Throughout Peter’s stint Hayman Island received a series of awards including TOURISM + LEISURE (US) MAGAZINE ‘Best Restaurant, Australia and South Pacific’ ¡V World’s Best Awards 2002.
In April 2003 Peter returned to Sydney, with his family, in preparation of launching his biggest project to date: the impressive Flying Fish restaurant – in collaboration with co- owner Con Dedes.
Following the opening of Flying Fish Sydney, in 2008 Peter was asked to open Flying Fish Fiji, located on the grounds of the Sheraton Denarau.
Flying Fish Tokoriki located at Sheraton Resort & Spa, Tokoriki Island, Fiji followed in 2014.
Peter’s signature style of fresh quality seafood, stunning ambience and beachside locations can also be experienced in Australia in his home town of Noosa at Noosa Beach House.
Peter consults to a variety of businesses in the food and beverage world and has been a guest chef in many countries including the Westin hotel Beijing, New World Hotel Ho Chi Mihn City Vietnam, and Soneva Fushi Maldive Islands to name a few.
Peter’s latest collaboration on menus and food and beverage operations is with the highly awarded Resplendent Ceylon group, both at the stunning Cape Weligama and soon-to-be-open Wild Coast Tented Lodge in Yala National Park
In July 2008, to celebrate the 21st Anniversary of Dilmah, Peter led a team of eight celebrated chefs and restaurateurs from prestigious Australian establishments to Sri Lanka to film “The Chef & the Tea Maker”. Peter was responsible for putting together the team of culinary experts for a unique journey into the culinary art of tea.
Peter has now worked with Dilmah Tea in an ambassadorial role for many years, developing the concept of tea gastronomy. This involves hosting the annual worldwide “Real High Tea Challenge”, recipe development and developing Dilmah t-Lounges across the globe
Peter’s childhood experiences cooking with his Grandmother in the traditional kitchen of his ancestral home in Colombo, Sri Lanka inspired his first cookbook “Serendip – My Sri Lankan Kitchen”.
His next cookbook “My Feast with Peter Kuruvita” takes food lovers on a culinary and cultural journey through the island communities of Asia and the South Pacific.
Peter has also forged a path into the world of television, as presenter of a travel cooking adventure series. Peter has now presented 4 TV series produced by The Precinct Studios for SBS Television, which air on many networks worldwide.
His shows combine beautiful scenery with sensational local cuisine
“My Sri Lanka with Peter Kuruvita”
“Island Feast with Peter Kuruvita”
“Mexican Fiesta with Peter Kuruvita”