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Women’s History Month Spotlight: Executive Chef Vasiliki Vourliotaki

Vourliotaki takes the lead at the Luma Hotel’s dining concept, AperiBar, in New York

By Linden M. Bayliss

AperiBar, an Italianesque restaurant and cocktail bar located in the Luma Hotel Times Square in New York, New York, has announced the appointment of Vasiliki Vourliotaki as its new executive chef. Rooted in an approach that celebrates simplicity with seasonally inspired menus, Chef Vourliotaki brings fresh perspective, international influence, and a passion for culinary excellence to the now entirely woman-led AperiBar team.

Chef Vasiliki Vourliotaki is AperiBar’s new executive chef. || Courtesy of Luma Hotel Times Square

Originally hailing from Athens, Greece, Vourliotaki began her journey at the Le Monde Institute of Hotel & Tourism Studies in Moschato, Greece, where she obtained her degree in culinary arts—later getting some airtime in a food expert role on television program “MasterChef Greece.” With a career now spanning more than 16 years, Vourliotaki has worked as chef de partie across three one-starred Michelin restaurants—including Oceana in New York City and Helen Darroze in Paris, France—before moving into the role of sous chef at Nammos Mykonos in Psarrou, Greece, followed by executive chef at Ousia back in New York. She has trained in Monaco on the handling and cooking standards of Kobe and Wagyu Beef and was awarded Ambassador of Greek Gastronomy by organization Greek Taste Beyond Borders in 2020.

“I’m beyond excited to be at the helm of AperiBar and bring forth my culinary knowledge and expertise to craft new experiences and evolve our current offerings alongside Chef Charlie Palmer,” says Vourliotaki in a prepared statement. “I look forward to celebrating the Italianesque and European spirit of AperiBar and further showcase its capabilities to build on shared experiences and uncomplicated, yet delicious food.”

With a strong passion for making people happy through food, Vourliotaki brings an abundance of creativity with a fresh and simple approach that highlights seasonal flavor profiles. Her ultimate goal is to introduce even more seafood-forward dishes to the restaurant as well as supplement the menu with a variety of new seasonal pastas—blending AperiBar’s traditional core menu with new and exciting food trends.

“The addition of Chef Vourliotaki to our culinary team at AperiBar welcomes in a new era for this timeless destination that celebrates the best cocktails and Italianesque cuisine,” says chef and partner Charlie Palmer, in a prepared statement. “The culinary expertise she brings to the table is an invaluable opportunity for us to continue to be the go-to place for those looking to partake in a shared meal in a charming setting.”

In addition to Chef Vourliotaki, AperiBar’s leadership team also includes General Manager Yana Lapchevskaya and Dining Room Manager Sadie Michaels.

AperiBar is available for both semi-private dining and full buyouts and Luma Hotel Times Square has multiple other venue options for meetings and events.