Purveyor of conscious cuisine, Patina Maldives, Fari Islands, unveils a thoughtfully refreshed array of food concepts, from experiential venues to reinvigorated menus, further underlining its status as a cutting-edge culinary destination within the archipelago. Balancing innovation, technical skill, zero-waste sensibilities and the freshest ingredients across its ensemble 12 dining experiences, the offering places an emphasis on sustenance, authenticity, and flavour.
For a nurturing immersion in nature, signature dining restaurant Roots has taken up residence in the resort’s on-island organic Perpetual Garden. Guests can now enjoy the innovative, nutritious plant-based dishes in situ, creating a unique connection with the ingredients growing all around them. Centred on homegrown produce, the degustation menu changes according to seasonal availability and includes the likes of Delectable Tomato, confit tomato, lacto-fermented tomato juice and basil oil; Watermelon Tataki, watermelon, charred onion and chive oil; and Spiced Carrot Cake, dehydrated carrots and orange sorbet, all paired with a selection of organic and biodynamic wines.
The resort’s Perpetual Garden was conceived to secure hyper-local produce for the restaurant kitchens by growing as many fresh ingredients as possible. Since September, Patina Maldives has harvested a wide variety of fruit, vegetables, and herbs, including 94kg of watermelon, over 200kg of aubergines and 50kg of okra, with plans to expand next year. Patina Maldives purchases over 95 per cent of its seafood from local fishermen who use traditional, sustainable fishing methods and deliver their catch daily. Off-island ingredients are meticulously sourced to ensure best practice in the supply chain.
Portico, the resort’s all-day dining venue, offers unpretentious, flavourful food, delivered with passion and precision to stimulate the senses and feed the soul. Overlooking the resort’s main beach and pool, it opens for dinner with a new ‘Taste of the Indian Ocean’ concept showcasing cuisine from across the region, including Southern Indian, Sri Lankan and of course local Maldivian specialities. Dishes could include Barabo Mashuni, pumpkin salad with curry leaves and coconut and Kandu Kukulhu, curry stuffed tuna rolls made with aged curry paste and coconut cream.
At the high-energy, buzzy Wok Society, fresh local ingredients sing in a new menu featuring flavours from the distinct cultures and provinces of China, under the guidance of Chef Zhang Sichuan. Highlights include handmade noodles; dim sum and Xiaolongbao; and mouth-watering main courses, from steamed snapper to black pepper beef or pork rib with garlic, all complemented by an impressive list of craft beers. Over on the sunset side of the island, the conviviality and flavours of the Aegean are celebrated in the soulful kitchen of Helios, a laid-back beachfront destination. Kinship, generosity, and warmth come together through wholesome hot and cold meze, grilled meats and seafood, and exquisite desserts. Depending on the season, guests can enjoy a breakfast of hot and cold favourites including eggs Menemen (scrambled with tomato, pepper, and onion) and Yumurta Halsama (boiled with olive oil, pepper and lemon); a selection of Turkish jams and pastries; nuts and seeds; cold cuts and cheeses, overlooking the sweeping beach and tranquil ocean vista beyond.
The communal heart of the Fari Islands, the Fari Marina Village is open to resort guests and non-resident visitors alike, and features eateries to suit any mood. The vibrant promenade is flanked by yachts, with a vibrant social scene that attracts bon viveurs from neighbouring resorts and beyond. Beachfront social hub The Fari Beach Club offers a multi-sensory dining and entertainment experience centred on fresh, sustainably caught seafood and a crudo bar, while at Kōen Japanese culinary artistry is married with Scandinavian style in a sophisticated 10-course signature tasting menu.
Drawing inspiration from cuisine found in the most remote corners of South America, Brasa champions the intimacy of open-fire cooking where guests have a front row seat to the culinary action. Newly appointed Peruvian Chef Nick Magdeleno takes the helm, delivering an authentic seven-course tasting menu built on vivid flavours and forged through smoke and flame.
A calming sanctuary of earthen tones, Farine thrives under the guidance of Maldivian Chef Abdulla Rifzan. The contemporary European bistro serves freshly baked artisan breads, Italian style antipasti of cured meats and cheeses, and hearty main courses for those looking for easy casual eating.
For a quick bite, guests can catch one of the pop-up food trucks from daily complimentary gelato (vegan soft serves included) at Tuk Tuk Gelato to Go Go Burger, which serves up mouth-watering burgers now including tuna and Beyond Meat options. The poolside Veli Bar offers crafted light bites and creative tipples made with homemade syrups and ingredients grown on the island. Zero-waste cocktails include Oleo-Saccharum, using sugar syrup extracted from the discarded husks of citrus after juicing, as well as fermenting and pickling ingredients to minimise surplus.
Culinary director John Bakker joined the team at Patina Maldives, Fari Islands in June of this year, and has been tasked with overseeing the acclaimed food and beverage offer at the resort’s 12 outlets.
From a small town in Southwestern Ontario, Canada, Chef John left home 24 years ago to pursue his dreams in the culinary world. Since then, he has worked in 19 countries including in Scotland, Sweden, the USA, Canada, Germany, the Cayman Islands and France. His many years of experience include five as Executive Chef at Gili Lankanfushi, and more recently he held Culinary and Food & Beverage Director positions with Six Senses resorts in Turkey and The Kingdom of Bhutan.
Bakker’s vision is to bring Patina’s principles of perpetuality and sustainability to life on the plate, and to wow diners’ palates with authentic flavours that represent the spirit of the individual outlets. “With all the choices available, the culinary journey at Patina is vast, but we want it to be relaxed, easy-going and genuine. We offer memorable, flavourful and dynamic culinary experiences, and we thrive on making our guests’ dreams a reality.”