Q & A with Dany Karam, Executive Chef BLACK by ezard

Dany Karam

Dany Karam is the Executive Chef at grill house BLACK by ezard, which is located inside The Star casino complex.  We’re pretty sure this means he can cook a mean steak!

Dany’s food journey started in his home country of Lebanon and has seen him travel to the South of France and now he finds himself in Australia.  He loves to combine cultures and cuisines in his dishes.

We caught up with him to find out where he likes to eat and drink in Sydney.  We love hearing from the experts, don’t you?

Q: Where do you go to get a great cup of coffee (or tea if you’re not a latte lover)?

If I’m heading to work at BLACK by ezard I stop in at Antidote in Pyrmont.  Single Origin Roasters in Surry Hills also do an excellent cappuccino.

Q: If you could only eat one last meal on this earth, where and what would it be?

My mum’s traditional Sunday lunch – a beautiful spread of Lebanese mezze.

Q: Please share with us your 5 all time favourite restaurants or bars in Sydney

  1. Ms G’s – approachable modern Asian food with just the right atmosphere – great for diner with mates.
  2. Sepia – Martin Benn is an incredible talented chef and the art-deco building makes for an extra special night out.
  3. Kitchen by Mike – I was a Kitchen by Mike regular at Rosebery for Sunday brekkie with my family, so I’m very keen to visit Kitchen by Mike when it re-opens at Sydney Airport when it re-opens. I’ve missed it!
  4. Sokyo Lounge – It has the best Japanese whisky selection in Sydney. My go-to drink is the Hibiki 12 year old whisky on the rocks.
  5. Marque – Mark Best has a very good thing going here, with classic dishes and polished service.

Q: If you had visitors in town, where would be the first place you’d take them to dine and/or drink?

I’d love to say Cafe Paci but it’s now closed.  Instead, I’d take them to Firedoor in Surry Hills to experience the chef’s menu.

Q: Where do you buy your produce in Sydney?

I get my seafood from Sydney Fish Market, my meat from Vic’s Meat Market and my fruit and vegetables from the Sydney Growers Market at Flemington.

Q:  What inspired your passion for food and what does food mean to you?

I grew up in Lebanon and as a young boy I would watch my father grow and handpick fresh fruit and vegetables as a hobby.  Heirloom tomatoes, zucchinis, pears and apples were always in abundance.  My mother would then create delicious, home-cooked meals using the produce we grew.  Food is my world, and from an early age I knew I wanted to be a chef.  My life completely revolves around cooking, eating and serving food.

Q:  What do you want your ‘food’ legacy to be?

Cooking simple, approachable food like a great steak.

Q:  Tell us something not many people know about you!

I’m a watch collector. I’ve been collecting them for seven years now and my favourite watch in my collection is my Tag Heuer. I have my eye on the Hublot range next.

You heard it here first folks!

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