A passionate and innovative chef, fusing cuisines and blending flavours
Having established himself as one of the nation’s most prominent chefs, Adam D’Sylva is known for his innovation when it comes to food. As Co-Owner and Executive Chef of award-winning restaurants Tonka and Coda, Adam draws on his cultural background to create incredible meals for his guests.
Growing up in a mixed Italian and Indian heritage family, Adam’s mother was a major influence in him pursuing his passion for cooking. Adam began his culinary career with an apprenticeship at Hilton on the Park in Melbourne, before working as a chef at Cosiin in South Yarra. He went on to explore his love for food by travelling through Asia and Europe, sharpening his skills by working at restaurants in Italy and Hong Kong.
After returning to Australia, Adam was appointed Head Chef under Geoff Lindsay at Pearl, and then Head Chef at Longrain Melbourne under Martin Boetz.
In 2008, Adam was awarded The Age Good Food Guide’s ‘Young Chef of the Year’, travelling to New York as part of his price to work with Thomas Keller at Per Se. Adam has since won the Lexus Young Chef of the Year award twice.
In 2009, alongside partners Mykal and Kate Bartholomew, Adam opened Coda. With a menu that draws on cuisines from across the globe, Coda has been awarded and maintained One Chef’s Hat in The Age Good Food Guide since opening.
In 2013, Adam opened Tonka, with a menu focussing on his Indian heritage. With food that celebrates the vibrancy and excitement of Indian cuisine, Tonka has also been awarded and maintained One Chef’s Hat in The Age Good Food Guide since opening.
A frequent presence in the media, Adam has appeared on a variety of culinary shows, including ‘MasterChef Australia’, ‘Everyday Gourmet’, ‘The Chef’s Line’, and ‘Ready, Steady, Cook’. He is a regular guest at some of Australia’s best food and wine festivals.