As part of our #SpotlightWednesdays, we want to not only appreciate, but let you get to know our team a little better and showcase just how much they love being part of our community-centred story. This month’s blog post zooms into Chef Ali’s journey with us…

Ali’s role at Damascena

As you may have guessed from the title, Ali is a chef with us! He’s has worked at all three of our branches in the years he’s been with us and is a valued member of our team. Ali said he feels he’s learned a lot of valuable skills since being with us and is confident in delivering those skills to a high standard. Most importantly, he said he feels his hard work and efforts are valued. (Of course they are – He’s great!)

Ali is also an incredible pastry chef! With a speciality in baking, he makes most of our pastries by hand, such as the maganeesh and fatayers… If you’ve not tried them yet, we advise you should!

As a presentation perfectionist, he also enjoys dressing our dishes, ensuring you get food that’s both delicious and perfect for the gram!

His personality 

Ali is a great person to work with and is always laughing and joking with our team, whilst remaining professional.

He said: ‘It’s been a pleasure meeting the team, all from different backgrounds. My colleagues make my day joyful, even when the kitchen is incredibly busy. I especially love it when one of the front of house team make me a nice coffee and bring it to the kitchen with a warm smile. These things are that make Damascena such a joy to be around. Damascena is my second home and I am proud to be working here.’

Whilst cooking or not, you’ll find Ali singing to traditional Arabic Oud or exchanging languages with fellow employees.

Favourite Damascena memory

‘My favourite memory was last summer. The staff from all 3 branches came together to have a BBQ, I sang a lot and kept everyone entertained, we had a great time!’ The Damascena family enjoys each other’s company and know how to have fun!

Favourite Damascena dish

As a lover of his own trade, Ali’s favourite food from our menu is the fatayer pastries. With 8 different varieties of pastry, you’re spoiled for choice, so he never gets bored of it! With a long passion for baking he says it brings back childhood memories of being at home with his family in Syria. He’s always so proud to see the beautiful pastries come out of the oven and for the wonderful smell to spread throughout the kitchen.

Say hello to Ali if you see him in the Coffee House!

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