Chef Alex Atala

Chef Alex Atala

Owner and Chef
D.O.M. , Dalva e Dito, Açougue Central, Brazil
Eating Indigenous: A conversation with Chef Alex Atala

Chef Alex Atala’s restaurant D.O.M in São Paulo, Brazil has built a reputation—and earned recognition as one of the Top 5 restaurants in the world—through its unique style of cuisine using indigenous Brazilian ingredients, combined with a commitment to finding sustainable solutions for sourcing them. The former DJ was classically trained as a chef in Europe, then returned to his homeland and began to seek out unique ingredients for his recipes. Atala refuses to import luxury ingredients such as truffles or caviar. Instead, he routinely visits the Amazon to search for indigenous plants to incorporate with classical techniques in his cooking. He works with native communities and small-scale producers to make these products more widely available. In 2013, Chef Atala co-founded the ATÁ Institute, a food market that guarantees that all ingredients come only from local producers. In 2013, Chef Alex was named one of the "100 most influential people" by TIME Magazine. In 2015, he became the best-ranked Brazilian chef in the Michelin Guide when D.O.M. received two stars (the only two star restaurant in Brazil) and was recently voted as number 4 in the San Pellegrino 50 Best Restaurant Awards. domrestaurante.com