Shane Delia

Shane Delia

At just 31 years of age, Shane Delia is one of Melbourne's most innovative chefs. Opening his much awarded first restaurant Maha Bar and Grill in February 2008, Shane has excited diners with his fresh Mediterranean approach to Middle Eastern cuisine.

Shane prides himself on his original culinary style that stems from the eclectic influences that have surrounded him both personally and professionally. Growing up in a large Maltese family, food was more than just a meal; it was a chance for the whole family to gather around and enjoy a meal and each other's company. This shared dining experience is something that Shane has mastered in his venues.

Early on, and with the influence of relatives who worked with food, Shane realised that he wanted to translate his love for food and hospitality into something tangible. He undertook his apprenticeship at le Restaurant at the Hotel Sofitel and excelled in his career progression.

By the age of 21 Shane was appointed sous chef of Eleonore's at Chateau Yering in the Yarra Valley. In February 2003 Shane was promoted to Executive Chef and Eleonore's was recognised as one of country Victoria's finest Hotels and a member of the prestigious Relais Chateaux chain. Through travel and family experiences Shane became aware of the many similarities between his own Maltese upbringing and culture, and those of his Middle Eastern neighbours across the Mediterranean. He began to experiment with fusing Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines, with the outcome being the ideology behind Maha Bar and Grill.

His love for food and family is at the centre of what makes Maha extraordinary. Blending his classical training and his passion for honest, fresh and innovative Middle Eastern cuisine, Shane's "maha cooking" is captivating. Since opening, Maha's reputation as a culinary delight has excelled, both with diners and food critics, with the restaurant awarded a Chef's Hat in 2009, 2010 and 2011 by The Age Good Food Guide. Maha was also named 'Speciality Cuisine Restaurant' at the Australian Restaurant and Catering Awards in 2009.

Shane's rise in the culinary world continues with the opening of his second restaurant in Melbourne, 'St Katherine's with The Press Club Group, and George Calombaris. St Katherine's embraces a contemporary sharing style menu, with a melding of Modern Greek, Turkish and Middle Eastern cultures and food. Defined by its custom made Turkish grill and a wood fired oven, St Katherine's is the place where the long time friends are bringing together their family histories, cultures and cuisines.

In addition to his restaurants, Shane regularly appears as a Guest Chef on TV shows such as Ready Steady Cook and the popular morning show, The Circle. Shane's unique culinary techniques and creativity with food, along with his cheeky nature and quick wit make for great viewing. Shane also uses his profile to help raise the profile of two causes that are close to his heart. As the proud father of Jayda, family is a focus for Shane, which has lead him to take on the role of Ambassador for OzChild.

In addition to this, Shane has recently become an Ambassador for the Ilhan Food Allergy Foundation. This affiliation is reflected in the menu at Maha, being recognised as a Registered Halal Restaurant, and offering a full Vegetarian menu. To add to an already exciting 2011, Shane is set to release his first cookbook 'Maha' towards the end of the year.

At just 31 years of age, Shane Delia is one of Melbourne’s most innovative chefs. Opening his much awarded first restaurant Maha Bar and Grill in February 2008, Shane has excited diners with his fresh Mediterranean approach to Middle Eastern cuisine.

Shane prides himself on his original culinary style that stems from the eclectic influences that have surrounded him both personally and professionally. Growing up in a large Maltese family, food was more than just a meal; it was a chance for the whole family to gather around and enjoy a meal and each other’s company. This shared dining experience is something that Shane has mastered in his venues.

Early on, and with the influence of relatives who worked with food, Shane realised that he wanted to translate his love for food and hospitality into something tangible. He undertook his apprenticeship at le Restaurant at the Hotel Sofitel and excelled in his career progression.

By the age of 21 Shane was appointed sous chef of Eleonore’s at Chateau Yering in the Yarra Valley. In February 2003 Shane was promoted to Executive Chef and Eleonore’s was recognised as one of country Victoria’s finest Hotels and a member of the prestigious Relais Chateaux chain. Through travel and family experiences Shane became aware of the many similarities between his own Maltese upbringing and culture, and those of his Middle Eastern neighbours across the Mediterranean. He began to experiment with fusing Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines, with the outcome being the ideology behind Maha Bar and Grill.

His love for food and family is at the centre of what makes Maha extraordinary. Blending his classical training and his passion for honest, fresh and innovative Middle Eastern cuisine, Shane’s “maha cooking” is captivating. Since opening, Maha’s reputation as a culinary delight has excelled, both with diners and food critics, with the restaurant awarded a Chef’s Hat in 2009, 2010 and 2011 by The Age Good Food Guide. Maha was also named ‘Speciality Cuisine Restaurant’ at the Australian Restaurant and Catering Awards in 2009.

Shane’s rise in the culinary world continues with the opening of his second restaurant in Melbourne, ‘St Katherine’s with The Press Club Group, and George Calombaris. St Katherine’s embraces a contemporary sharing style menu, with a melding of Modern Greek, Turkish and Middle Eastern cultures and food. Defined by its custom made Turkish grill and a wood fired oven, St Katherine’s is the place where the long time friends are bringing together their family histories, cultures and cuisines.

In addition to his restaurants, Shane regularly appears as a Guest Chef on TV shows such as Ready Steady Cook and the popular morning show, The Circle. Shane’s unique culinary techniques and creativity with food, along with his cheeky nature and quick wit make for great viewing. Shane also uses his profile to help raise the profile of two causes that are close to his heart. As the proud father of Jayda, family is a focus for Shane, which has lead him to take on the role of Ambassador for OzChild.

In addition to this, Shane has recently become an Ambassador for the Ilhan Food Allergy Foundation. This affiliation is reflected in the menu at Maha, being recognised as a Registered Halal Restaurant, and offering a full Vegetarian menu. To add to an already exciting 2011, Shane is set to release his first cookbook ‘Maha’ towards the end of the year.

Guest Recipes