By Avneet Takhar
Located inside Seaside Hotel on Vancouver’s North Shore is Seaside Provisions, a restaurant with the freshest seafood and a raw fish bar propped up against the chef quarters so you can see your meal getting prepped in real-time! With chef Peter Kim overseeing the menu and creating a quality palette experience for guests, we took some time to digest his journey as a food connoisseur.
How did you come up with the menu? Looks like there’s something for everyone, with choices!
I’ve always wanted to cook what I love to eat, which is Asian-inspired, West Coast cuisine. Turning a dish that is traditional to its own country/ region into something that is approachable, yet adventurous is the continuous goal with my menus.
What was your first job in the industry and how’d that get you to Seaside Provisions?
My first job, like many people in the industry, was a dishwasher. Working in the kitchen was very tough in the early stages of my career however the more challenges I came across, the more I wanted to overcome; to do better.
Seeing some of the chefs that I worked with and where they were at (in their careers) was something of a goal to work towards. My travels to many countries were inspired by the reputable establishments and the ability to learn and grow. Things I learned during different stages and internships overseas and being a part of the teams I was inspired by, was more valuable than money or job positions.
What would you say is a good starting point for those who are opposed to fish?
As sad as I am to say it, our oceans are facing very difficult times that may take many decades to recover or possibly never be able to, due to overfishing and pollution. But there are many sustainable and ethically-raised products that are just as amazing and abundant right here in BC. Not only does choosing local, and Ocean Wise– approved products help save the environment but it also supports fisheries, farmers and the industry.
Circling back to the question of a starting point for those who are opposed to fish, I suggest going with something that is familiar, like halibut when in season, and salmon. Both are very versatile and have many preparation methods that can be approachable for beginners.
You studied at Le Cordon Bleu (infamous French cooking school), Ottawa, the only campus in Canada for the coveted culinary institute. What was the experience like there?
Competition between classmates there was very intense since everyone that attended the school had one goal in mind: to become a chef.
Le Cordon Bleu was definitely tough, learning about all the basics from knife skills to cooking methods, ingredients, classics and their derivatives, yet there is no doubt that what I learned at school all those years ago laid a base foundation for everything I do now.
What kind of influence did French cuisine have on your cooking journey, and are there any other cultural influences that you’ve carried forth?
My style of cooking and passion for the Asian-forward concept is definitely something that I have picked up on and polished over the years of my career. And with French cuisine, it has laid a solid foundation and basic understanding of the chemistry and science behind food.
As I’ve built my career and found a deeper passion for the style which I’ve pursued, I always reflect on what I learned from school in how to better influence and integrate multiple cuisines together. Resembling an alchemist, of sorts.
Could you tell us the most important tip for being a great chef?
As hard as it is to put into practice on a daily basis and to live by every day: stay hungry mentally- learning never stops. Don’t aim to be perfect, but be better than yesterday.
Visit Seaside Provisions IRL, and you may catch a peek of chef Peter Kim making your food over the bar!
Get here: 130-125 Victory Ship Way, North Vancouver, BC V7L 0G5
Transit: It’s just a short walk from the Lonsdale Quay SeaBus terminal.