The food produced by Melissa Palinkas has been lavished with praise by reviewers who describe her food as ‘inventive, fun, smart, original and drop dead gorgeous’.
While she enjoys producing an innovative menu, Melissa prides herself on running a sustainable kitchen at her restaurants, Young George Bar & Kitchen and Ethos Deli & Dining Room, making the best use of every part of vegetables and meats and minimising waste and plastic use. Her ‘nose to tail’ or ‘root to shoot’ approach to cooking means that nothing is wasted – the trimmings of vegetables and meats are used in stock, leftover vegetables are fermented or used for preserves and spent fruit rinds are converted to cocktail bases and house made cordials.
She tries to reduce the carbon footprint of the kitchen by reducing the use of disposable plastics in her restaurant. Sauces are stored in recycled glass jars and the restaurant’s own crates are sent to suppliers to be filled with produce. In 2019, Melissa eliminated 95% of single use plastics at Young George and her second venture, Ethos Deli & Dining Room, which opened in August in 2020, is 100% single use plastic free and features a zero-waste menu.
Melissa’s first kitchen job was at the Brass Monkey in Northbridge. She worked overseas in London and Dublin then took on the head chef role at The Cabin in Mt Hawthorn for 4 years before setting up her first restaurant, Young George, with wife Susan.
Melissa was honoured to receive her first Hat at the 2020 Good Food Guide Awards and to be named the 2019 West Australian Good Food Guide Chef of the Year.