Chef de Cuisine, Hotel Okura Amsterdam
When chef Louise O’Hare first landed in Amsterdam as a tourist over a decade ago, the Dublin-born gourmand, just 23 at the time, felt an instant tug towards the laidback Dutch capital. “I immediately told my sister I was going to live here,” admits the chef, who now steers Taste of Okura, a range of innovative cookery workshops for Hotel Okura Amsterdam, an epicurean escape in the city’s bohemian De Pijp neighborhood.
For Louise, who spent much of her childhood vacations in a series of bed-and-breakfasts along the windswept Irish coast, the ocean continues to play a starring role in her culinary pursuits, including in recent on-property master classes, which serve as thorough tutorials on prepping local delicacies like oosterschelde, or fresh water lobster. Other spotlighted ingredients include locally harvested asparagus, a vegetable that’s affectionately known as “white gold” across much of The Netherlands, and wagyu beef, a tribute to the hotel’s Japanese roots.