Meet Executive Chef, Bijan G. Shokatfard
Born in Geisen, Germany, Bijan relocated with his family to the United States as a young boy. It’s no surprise he spent much of his time growing up in the kitchen. Following his old-world Grandmother while she cooked family meals, you could say she was his very first chef mentor and he was her protégé.
Bijan’s real kitchen experience began at the age of 22 while he worked at Café Regata, a restaurant in Huntington Beach, under an older Italian chef who taught him good work ethic and the importance of quality ingredients, especially the concept of simplicity in cooking and letting the flavors shine through. These valuable life lessons were reinforced as Bijan worked his way through a variety of different restaurants. Whether a small, family-owned eatery or large-scale venue, he realized the pressure of the hot line requires commitment to a quality education.
Bijan attended the California Culinary Academy, San Francisco, and graduated at the top of his class in 1997. Equipped with honors, Bijan set his sights forward as a Sous Chef for a Southeastern Asian restaurant called the Eastern Oriental Trading Co. Years later, he relocated to Chez Melange in Redondo Beach in Los Angeles. For three years, he fine-tuned his skills under a number of talented chefs. Inspired by their different styles, he opened Peete’s Café in Los Angeles as the Executive Chef.
After only a year at Peete’s Café, a Malibu restauranteur came knocking on his door, Jeff Peterson. Geoffrey’s Malibu invited Bijan to accept the opportunity of a lifetime—become the Executive Chef at the world famous restaurant. Fourteen years later, he is still challenged with one goal in mind: create the ultimate dining experience for guests in both artistic presentation and surprising flavors.
While Bijan could not foresee blazing an award-winning career during those early days with his Grandmother, he has left his mark with Geoffrey’s Malibu. His culinary style is well-known locally and around the world for his use of unique ingredients and flavors, with signature dishes that continue to inspire us against the natural backdrop of the Pacific Ocean.