Beachside cool, Aussie Chef and adrenaline junkie,
Josh Davies dishes on his life with his little one in Bali
Hailing from New South Wales, Executive Chef and Global Operations Manager of Chōsen Experiences, Josh Davies has had 19 years of hospitality experience working all over the world from Queenstown to Guatemala and now in Bali, Indonesia. Having a huge passion for quality conscious ingredients, sourcing locally (a big believer of farm to table dining) and using full flavours to cook his food, the service and delivery is just as seamless. A big outdoorsy kind of guy and a lover of the great outdoors, he spends his free time surfing and keeping fit through CrossFit and of course spending quality time with his wife and daughter, Maya.
Can you tell us a bit about your background?
I grew up in the beautiful coastal town of Jervis Bay, NSW, Australia. I spent the last 20 years travelling around Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia, learning the crafts of cooking and fine service. Bali is where I met John & Robin, the founders of Chōsen Experiences. Together we developed the culinary aspects of Chōsen, focusing on Farm-to-Table, healthy, nutritious and delicious food, using ethically sourced ingredients to leave your body rejuvenated and nourished.
What inspired you to start your career in cooking?
I had an early passion for food and I remember cooking with my grandmother, before the age of 10. My mother and uncle are also very talented in the kitchen.
What brought you to Chōsen?
I was looking for a way to grow and I can honestly say that Chōsen found me. John and Robin were dining at the restaurant I was working in, and our relationship grew from there. I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie and have a love for travel and exploring. Chōsen allows me to combine my knowledge and affection for food, with great people and amazing experiences in exceptional destinations. I am very lucky!
What do you love about living and cooking in Bali?
The culture and the people! Bali has so much to offer, being a volcanic island with nutrient rich soil, there’s an abundance of fresh food, especially fruit, vegetables and of course seafood. The Balinese are beautiful souls, kind, happy and great to work with.
What is your partner’s favourite dish that you cook for her?
She loves it all! Especially the part of being cooked for as it always makes her feel special. If I had to pick one… I’d say, the crispy skin salmon with salsa verde and broccoli, coconut and toasted almond salad.
How did you find out your partner was pregnant?
We both got dengue fever a few months after moving to Bali, so to aid in our recovery, we took on a super healthy lifestyle for a few months which basically meant living the Chōsen lifestyle. Rosalyne fell pregnant shortly after that and Maya was on the way!
What was your reaction to the news?
Excited and scared but not necessarily in that order…!
How did you choose your daughter’s name?
My wife told me! Maya was always going to be Maya and it suits her.
How was your experience of changing the first diaper?
Apart from the obvious grossness of it all, it wasn’t too bad. I was much more worried about dropping her or breaking her… Such a fragile little being.
How hands-on were you during the birth process?
I was there every step of the way. I almost passed out once, but pulled through and got to cut the cord which was a crazy experience.
How did you avoid the dad-bod?
I didn’t! Ha! We took four months off together as a family and went home to Jervis Bay. Once we got back to Bali, I got back into my routine of surfing, tennis and CrossFit. Working with the Chōsen Experience team of Olympic athletes, motivational life coaches, celebrated yogis, mindfulness gurus and nutritional therapists who motivate and inspire you every day… that definitely helped too.
What do you hope your daughter gets from you and what do you hope she doesn’t get?
I hope she gets my positive, optimistic attitude, and not my recklessness. I would come home with all sorts of fun, surf-related scrapes and bruises for my poor mum to address.
What’s your favourite part of your parenting routine?
Sunset playtime on the beach! Maya shares my love of the ocean and water. She is definitely a water baby.
Who plays good cop and bad cop between you and your partner?
I’m always the good cop! Unless bad cop loses control of the situation, then I am both.
Favourite baby-friendly places/activities in Bali?
The beach for sure!
How do you keep the romance alive after having a kid?
With a lot of breakfast in bed, I am the morning shift, so mummy gets a small sleep in and breakfast most mornings. Sometimes it’s the little things that help.
What’s the hardest part of being a dad?
At the moment, feeding Maya. But, mostly it’s the lack of sleep.
What’s the best part of being a dad?
Morning Cuddles. She’s also a morning person like me. She wakes up happy.
Who does your daughter look like, you or your partner
For sure it’s me! It’s the first thing everyone says when they meet her.
What’s your favourite characteristic of your baby?
She has the cheekiest smile ever.
How old does your daughter have to be before she can date?
When the sun rises in the west and sets in the east, then she can date.
What do you know now that you wish you knew before becoming a dad? Biggest lesson learned?
Enjoy the early days. Time flies!
What’s the funniest parenting story you can share?
Probably the day she threw my phone in the toilet and then gave me the sweetest smile… she was so proud!
How has having kids changed the way you define work?
Before, work was a daily duty and not one that I enjoyed. When Maya came along, I found a new drive and a profound sense of responsibility. A lot of amazing opportunities followed. In a way, I guess that also led me to the Chōsen Team.
Do you have any tips for soon-to-be dads?
Get some sleep!
Favourite date night spots with just your partner?
We take mini-holidays exploring all over the island.
If you know someone you’d think would be great to feature as our That Papa, please email us at [email protected].