Local with a Passion for World Flavours: Meet Chef, Shane Straiko
With his excellent culinary skills, years of experience, and focus on creating refined dining experiences, Chef Shane Straiko is bound to leave guests with a lasting impression. Shane takes great pleasure in creating and enhancing menu options and dinner features—each inspired by flavours and cultures from around the world. With over 20 years of (international) experience working with a range of reputable chefs at different restaurants, resorts and cruises, creating refined dining experiences is nothing new for Shane.
Read on to learn more about our chef, as well as what he means for The Oxford Hills, KALOS, and our community:
Raised locally in Tillsonburg, Ontario, chef Shane discovered his passion for both the region and culinary art at a young age. Growing up with fabulous food and nightly family dinners, becoming a chef came as a natural choice to Shane. Keen to get started, Shane joined his first professional kitchen at the age of fifteen.
After taking on a five-year apprenticeship under Chef Russell Browne and Chef Rick Harris, Shane began his journey working in various boutique inns, restaurants and private clubs under a myriad of international Chefs. In 2022, he accepted a position as Executive Sous Chef at Delta/Clublink Rocky Crest Golf Resort in Muskoka, Ontario. Privileged to receive this opportunity, working closely with Chef Patrick Louch allowed Shane to showcase his passion and flair for creating new and exciting dishes for this 5-star private golf club.
This is where Shane truly fell in love with the hustle and bustle of being a chef and his undeniable passion for new ingredients and flavour profiles. Realizing that these can’t simply be found in books, Chef Shane decided to seek out new flavours and cultures by traveling and working around the world. His first stop was New Zealand, including places such as Waiheke Island and the Marlborough Sounds. From there Shane’s travels took him to Australia, Indonesia, Costa Rica, St. Maarten (Netherlands Antilles), Vancouver, and finally London (England), where he took a position as chef at The Savoy, a reputable Fairmont managed hotel.
Most recently, Shane worked as Executive Chef for Celebrity Cruise Lines, travelling from port to port and experiencing the flavours of the world while working with a diverse team of chefs. Creating up to 25,000 meals a day on some of the most modern and luxurious cruise ships in the open sea.
When Shane isn’t sharing his love for delicious food with his guests, he likes to share it with his family and friends. Not surprisingly, he remains interested in travelling, allowing him to get (re)inspired and discover new cooking techniques, ingredients, and cultures—wherever he goes.
Ready for the Next Adventure
Shane is grateful to be part of The Oxford Hills’ team and has already started to put his skills to work. Drawing on his experience from around the world, and bringing in different flavours, chef Shane will be designing menus and weekly features that are locally-inspired, unforgettably delicious, and accessible for everyone. His dishes will exemplify his passion for food—all arranged with colour, shape, texture, and flavour in mind.
The focus of, and experience at, The Oxford Hills, and KALOS restaurant in specific, will remain as is—unique, delicious, and memorable. The food at KALOS will continue to be a celebration of local ingredients and, more than ever, will allow our (sous) chefs’ skills and creativity to shine through in every dish. Shane looks forward to creating an inclusive work atmosphere, bringing all individual talent to the forefront, and allowing our chefs’ combined efforts and culinary vision to continue to prepare outstanding dishes.
Ready to see Shane in action and taste his (and our culinary team’s) one-of-a-kind, flavourful dishes?