Surfing with the Chef in Carlsbad

Hit the waves with Chef Pierre Albaladejo of Park Hyatt Aviara Resort.

CHEF SIGHTING: When staying at a luxe hotel, where are some of the places you might run into the top toque on the property? The executive chef might stop by your table during dinner, to see if the lamb was to your liking, for sure. That's probably the way most guests encounter a chef, via an impromptu tableside conversation. What's rather rarer, though, is joining a fine hotel's executive chef on the beach for a bit of surfing, and then doing some cooking together. But Chef Pierre Albaladejo of Park Hyatt Aviara Resort in Carlsbad is just that rare chef. Raised in the South of France, Chef Albaladejo is an enthusiastic surfer, and it is a beloved pursuit that he is sharing with guests via the Surfing with the Chef program. You won't just be slipping into a wetsuit and wading into the nearby Pacific Ocean, however; there are several parts to the program, including starting the salty adventure with the most important meal of the day. Indeed...

WE'RE TALKING BREAKFAST... here, but you won't be waiting at a table for Chef to emerge from the kitchen, plates in hand. You'll join him at the stoves while you learn what techniques he employs, then, after a hearty meal, it is surf time at a Carlsbad stretch of sand. A beach meal follows — Chef Albaladejo will prepare it there —and you'll depart not only laden with tips of the surfing and cooking kind, but your own longboard, too. Will you need to find room in your car, or on the plane, for your new surfboard? Nope. The hotel will ship it to you. The only question that remains is this: How will future tableside chats with a chef live up to actually surfing with a chef? Well, they're still pretty cool, and nothing can dim that. But hanging ten with a gentleman typically rocking a toque is a pretty singular getaway experience, one that isn't easily replicated.

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