Kitchen talk with Lucas Glanville, senior executive chef of Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh

Kitchen talk with Lucas Glanville, senior executive chef of Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh

 Raised in a “food-focused” family, Lucas Glanville was inspired by his mother to pursue a culinary career while he was still in high school. He studied culinary arts at a London catering college before joining the Michelin-star restaurant Le Gavroche and subsequently joining Browns Restaurant Melbourn, an award-winning restaurant. Here, the senior executive chef of Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh at Kingdom Centre shares his insights into the Saudi culinary scene and how he is tackling the issue of sustainability in the kitchen.

What are some of the current culinary trends in Saudi Arabia that you’re excited to implement at Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh at Kingdom Centre?
We are enriching our menu with a variety of flavors and ingredients from the region, in addition to introducing vegetarian and vegan options to cater to the growing demand for plant-based dishes. We are also incorporating modern cooking techniques and utilizing locally sourced ingredients to create a unique dining experience.

How has the culinary scene in Saudi Arabia evolved over the past few years?
The culinary scene in Saudi Arabia has evolved significantly over the past few years, with a greater focus on local flavors, ingredients and cooking techniques. We have seen an increase in the number of restaurants offering regional cuisine as well as a greater emphasis on healthy eating options.

How are you addressing the issue of sustainability at Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh? 
We have noticed a shift in customer preferences toward more sustainable and eco-friendly dining options. To address this, we have implemented several sustainable practices in our kitchen, such as reducing food waste by using compostable packaging and utilizing energy-efficient equipment. We also prioritize local sourcing and products by partnering with local farmers and suppliers.
Furthermore, we’ve implemented energy-saving initiatives, such as LED lighting and low-flow water fixtures, and we are committed to reducing our carbon footprint by minimizing food waste and using sustainable packaging. We also strive to use organic and natural products, as well as those that are sustainably sourced.

How have Saudization and gender equality initiatives in the kingdom impacted your hotel? Have you seen an increase in the number of women working in the kitchen?
In terms of Saudization and recent gender equality initiatives, we have seen an increase in the number of women and Saudi employees joining our kitchen staff. At Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh, we always strive to create an inclusive environment that encourages diversity while providing equal opportunities for all employees, regardless of gender or nationality.


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Rita Ghantous

Rita Ghantous is a hospitality aficionado and a passionate writer with over 9 years’ experience in journalism and 5 years experience in the hospitality sector. Her passion for the performance arts and writing, started early. At 10 years old she was praised for her solo performance of the Beatles song “All My Love” accompanied by a guitarist, and was approached by a French talent scout during her school play. However, her love for writing was stronger. Fresh out of school, she became a freelance journalist for Noun Magazine and was awarded the Silver Award Cup for Outstanding Poetry, by The International Library of Poetry (Washington DC). She studied Business Management and earned a Masters degree from Saint Joseph University (USJ), her thesis was published in the Proche-Orient, Études en Management book. She then pursued a career in the hospitality industry but didn’t give up writing, that is why she launched the Four Points by Sheraton Le Verdun Newsletter. Her love for the industry and journalism led her to Hospitality Services - the organizers of the HORECA trade show in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan, as well as Salon Du Chocolat, Beirut Cooking Festival, Whisky Live and other regional shows. She is currently the Publications Executive of Hospitality News Middle East, Taste & Flavors and Lebanon Traveler. It is with ultimate devotion for her magazines that she demonstrates her hospitality savoir-faire.

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