executive chef - Joel Bickford
In May 2018, owners Matt Moran and Bruce Solomon announced Joel Bickford as Aria’s first new Executive Chef in 19 years.
Growing up on a property on the outskirts of a rural Blue Mountains town, Joel’s less-is-more approach to cooking is rooted in a lifelong connection to nature and a deep reverence for his ingredients and their unique regional qualities.
His reinterpretation of the menu at Aria has allowed him to embrace a cooking style that highlights a superb variety of seasonal Australian ingredients, with a razor-sharp balance between simplicity and extravagance, deference and innovation.
Twenty-five years of cooking have seen Joel hone his craft at esteemed establishments such as Bel Mondo, Eschalot and Restaurant Arras.
In 2015, saw Joel return to his rural roots. The call of the country led him to Biota Dining in the Southern Highlands where the restaurant maintained its Two Chef Hats under his guidance. Two years later, Joel returned to the city to head up the kitchen at Sydney’s waterfront Gantry Restaurant & Bar, claiming the restaurant it’s first Chef’s hat after a year under Joel’s direction.
Joel was named Daily Telegraph’s Chef of the Year in 2015 and was more recently awarded Chef of the Year at the 2018 Savour Excellence Awards. Through Bickford’s guidance and leadership in the Aria kitchen, Aria received 3 hats with a score of 17/20 from the Australian Good Food Guide.
From the farm to the kitchen, Joel believes that Australia’s ingredients, its artisan producers and the culinary community are among the world’s best and feels blessed to be able showcase the quality, diversity and talent of the Australian food industry at Aria.
Make a reservation today to try Joel's new menu.