Yacht Chef Opens Boutique Recruitment Company

20 June 2023 By Lauren Beck

Lauren Beck is the former editor of Dockwalk and was with the publication from 2006 to 2023. At 13, she left South Africa aboard a 34-foot sailing boat with her family and ended up in St. Maarten for six years. Before college, she worked as crew for a year, and then cut her journalistic teeth at Better Homes and Gardens and Ladies’ Home Journal online. She loves traveling, reading, tennis, and rooting for the Boston Red Sox.

It could be argued that the success of a charter depends heavily on the chef. So you need to hire the best — and Montclair Chef can help. Founded and directed by yacht Chef Chris Demaillet, Montclair Chef is a specialized boutique recruitment agency catering to private and superyacht chefs.

Their focus is on placing “top-notch” chefs. Demaillet — who also wrote The Yacht Chef Guide under his pseudonym Tim Dellea due to confidentiality issues — aims to focus on professional chefs and cooks, including those who have been trained by Michelin-starred establishments, but without limiting themselves as some clients may not need such specialties. “Additionally, we collaborate with smaller vessels that may not necessarily require a trained chef,” he says.

Demaillet emphasizes that they are incredibly discerning in their recruitment process. “We recognize that finding the ideal chef for a superyacht or private estate involves a delicate balance between culinary expertise and personal qualities,” he says. “While exceptional culinary skills are essential for catering to the exacting standards of UHNW families, paying charter guests, or elite superyacht owners, the chef’s ability to perform well under pressure and integrate seamlessly with the onboard crew is equally crucial. Our primary goal is to help our clients find the perfect candidate who excels in both these areas.”

Montclair Chef officially relaunched in winter 2022, so it’s no newbie in the game. Demaillet started YachtChefWanted.comin 2017, his platform that posted chef job opportunities daily. The accompanying private Facebook group now has more than 10,000 subscribed chefs, which Demaillet says is the world’s largest chef job posting board. All of this now has a new home under Montclair Chef.

Demaillet was motivated to start after being frequently approached by former crew, captains, and friends for his chef recommendations or his help in recruiting. “What began as a challenge and a hobby slowly became a clear career path for me,” Demaillet says.

Also new on the horizon is a new podcast for superyacht chefs. “Our industry boasts a wealth of hidden talent and ambition, and we aim to offer those who often work behind the scenes an opportunity to be heard and discovered,” Demaillet says. Stay tuned for more details.


More from Dockwalk