The Yak goes one on one with…
…Ours Groups ’culinary genius, Chef Gio Mello to chat about the “Ours” brand and its expansion in Uluwatu and beyond…
Chef Gio, could you give us a bit of a background into your culinary journey and what brought you to Bali?
The who and the why:
Initiators of the ‘Ours’ brand are… Myself, my wife and my great friend Sebastian and we have a passion for creating unique and memorable experiences. My love for travel, surfing and adventure brought me to Bali.
Apart from the F&B industry, what other industries are the Ours group entering?
Apart from the F&B industry, the Ours group have also expanded into the music scene in Bali. We brought the vibes of Tulum and Mykonos to Bali with the opening of Uluwatu’s first supper club last year. Additionally, we are building a beach club with a similar beach-chic style. We aim to provide our guests with a holistic experience that encompasses food, music, and atmosphere.
Back to all things edible and quaffable:
You are in charge of what aspects of Ourshome?
As the culinary director of Ours group, I oversee all aspects of the culinary experience at all ours venues Tabu, Ours, Ourshome and the new beach club. This includes menu development, ingredient sourcing, recipe creation, and culinary team management.
The choice of Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Australian, with some Bali added into the mix. How, as a chef, do your choose the “make up” of a menu? What are the criteria of bringing which cuisines together?
The cuisine at ourshome is inspired by my travels, and experiences, as well as the ingredients available in Bali. I aim to create a menu that is both diverse and cohesive, bringing together flavors and techniques from a variety of cuisines in a way that is harmonious and delicious. Our menu is based on Ours menu, with a touch of Bali’s local flavours. When it comes to the menu, we aim to create a space that offers food that is both cozy and gives a homely feel.
At ourshome, we strive to provide our guests with more freedom in their choice of ingredients and cooking methods, so they can feel like they are the chefs themselves.
Ourshome is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. How hard is it to appease and please people’s palates and allergies all of the time? Vegan, vegetarian and omnivore?
We have a variety of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options available, as well as the ability to modify dishes to accommodate specific allergies or dietary needs. Getting ourshome to where it is now has been a challenging yet rewarding journey. One of the key things that sets us apart is the unique concept of our menu. Our menu is more of a food guide than a traditional menu. We offer our guests the opportunity to create their own dishes, using different cooking methods and ingredients that they prefer. This approach is something that sets us apart from other food establishments in the area and it has been well-received by our guests. Our goal is to provide an experience that is both personal and memorable for every guest who visits us.
We believe in educating our customers about the food they eat, and this guide teaches the basics of food and nutrition. We have three different sections in the food guide: mental health, hormone and physical health, and macro nutrient diet. We want our customers to have the freedom to choose their own ingredients and cooking methods so they can feel like chefs in their own right and make food that feels like home.
Your Trip Advisor, and other review platforms, hold you in high staid, how hard has it been to get Ourshome to where you want it to be?
It has taken a lot of hard work and dedication to get Ours group to where it is today. We are incredibly proud of the positive feedback we have received from our community, and we are committed to continuing to provide the highest level of service and quality in all aspects of our operation.
Apart from offering delicious food, we truly believe that what sets us apart is the experience we create. We approach all of our establishments with pure soul and heart, and we work as a team with great synchronicity. We rely on our collective creativity and passion to create unique and memorable spaces that reflect the Ours brand. We believe that this approach, which is grounded in authenticity and collaboration, is what makes our establishments truly special.
What were the challenges (past) and what kinks are still left to iron out?
Putting our dreams into practice is indeed the biggest challenge we face as a company. We have big ambitions for the future, and it takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and careful planning to turn those ambitions into reality. We are constantly striving to push the boundaries and bring new and innovative ideas to the table, but that also means that we have to be prepared to face obstacles and setbacks along the way. However, we believe that with perseverance and a strong sense of purpose, we can overcome any challenge and achieve our goals.
How easy was it for Ourshome to source organic and ‘sustainable practice’ produce?
It was not easy to source organic and sustainable produce in Bali, but we have been able to establish relationships with local suppliers and farmers who share our commitment to sustainability and ethical practices. We are proud to use locally sourced and sustainable ingredients whenever possible, and we are constantly working to expand our network of suppliers to ensure that we are always using the best and most ethical ingredients available.
What would you say Ourshome has brought to an already burgeoning marketplace of food establishments in Uluwatu?
What sets us apart is our focus on creating a cozy and relaxed atmosphere that allows our customers to feel like they are at home.
Ourshome is Uluwatu’s first members club, designed exclusively to the local and expat community in Bali. Additionally, our collaboration with a nutritionist to create the Ourshome Food Guide – First Edition, demonstrates our commitment to promoting healthy eating habits.
Tell us more about Ourshome Food Guide – First Edition.
First Edition is a comprehensive guide that teaches the basics of food and nutrition. Divided into three sections, it covers mental, hormone and physical health, and macro nutrient diets. Our goal is to help customers make informed choices about what they eat and understand how it affects their health.
Finally, where do you like to go on your night off, any venue that you’d like to give a shout out to?
On my nights off, I really enjoy going to Savaya. They consistently bring some of the best music talent to Bali, and the atmosphere is always lively and energetic. It’s a great spot to unwind and have a good time with friends, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a fun night out.
Chef Gio – thank you for your time, and we look forward to sharing some delicious, deep fried olives and a bowl of Ragu…Let’s order!