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Behind the Menu: Peel St

Restaurants

Even three years after opening, Peel St remains one of Adelaide’s most popular restaurants. Here, chef and owner Jordan Theodoros offers some insight into why his kitchen is so busy.

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Jordan Theodoros is a quiet achiever among Adelaide chefs. The fusion of Asian, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean flavours that are so sought after at Peel St are a result of his Greek family heritage and the fact that his formative years in commercial kitchens were spent working under chefs Lew Kathreptis at Mezzes (Adelaide) and David Thompson at Darley Street Thai (Sydney).

Theodoros then spent time travelling through Burma and Shanghai before becoming head chef at the award-winning Melting Pot in Hyde Park (2004 to 2007). A stint cooking in Rajasthan, India, preceded the opening of Aquacaf at Goolwa, which he ran from 2008 to 2012.

A man of few words, Theodoros talks here about what’s on the menu at Peel St.

Jordan Theodorus Peel St

Peel St chef Jordan Theodoros. Photo: Nat Rogers/InDaily

The kitchen culture at Peel St is …
Hardworking, serious about food.

Who are you cooking for?
We cook for our customers, who are varied, which is great for us because it means we stay busy as we appeal to both young and old with our style of food.

Describe the current menu.
A mix of Asian, Middle Eastern and simple Mediterranean, using produce that’s in season.

What does it seek to achieve?
It just has to be delicious and generous; we don’t want people leaving hungry and we don’t want the food to be subtle. Big, bold flavours and abundance.

Who or what has had the greatest influence on your cooking?
Probably my wife these days. We cook a lot at home together.

What are the hero ingredients?
Banana blossoms, pomegranate, sawtooth coriander.

What is your favourite dish?
Probably the blue cheese ice cream with figs and persimmons at the moment.

What is your favourite food and wine match?
I really enjoy spicy Asian food with German Riesling. The wine holds up well against bold Asian flavours and especially with Thai food, which can be sweet, sour and salty.

What are you cooking at home?
Right now it’s pine mushrooms from the Adelaide Hills.

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