Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World® Resort
- 10100 Dream Tree Blvd., Lake Buena Vista, Florida, 32836, USA
Capa Steakhouse Chef
Four Seasons Tenure
- Since 2017
- First Four Seasons Assignment: Cook One, Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort
- Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes, Orlando; Gaylord Palms Resort, Kissimmee; The Breakers, Palm Beach; Waldorf Astoria, Orlando
- Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, Art Institute of Orlando, Florida
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
- English, Cambodian, Laotian
Capa Chef Malyna Si brings her passion for art into her cooking, in turn creating delectable masterpieces with her culinary techniques. Self-taught, refining her skills under the guidance and expertise of acclaimed chefs throughout her career, Si was originally in school to be a glass sculptor. While in art school, she began working in restaurants, and discovered her true calling was ultimately to be a chef.
“I love art in all forms and all mediums,” says Si, noting that working in a busy restaurant, with the volatility that comes along with it at times, is itself an art. “I’m attracted to all of the moving parts that come with the restaurant operation and being in the kitchen.”
While learning how to be a glass sculptor, Si took a restaurant job and was taken under the wing of a senior cook, who became her mentor. Eventually, Si worked her way up to a cook position, moving to advance in roles at various restaurants across Florida. At The Breakers resort in Palm Beach, Si worked in the banquets division, and it was there that she found her passion for working for luxury-positioned resorts. “I saw what it is like to be a part of a well-oiled machine,” says Si. “Everything is so precise and well thought-out, and I love the organization and level of detail behind it.” Si worked for several other Marriott properties before joining the team at Four Seasons Resort Orlando in 2017, as a Cook One. After two years behind the grill at Capa, she was promoted to Chef De Partie, and then became promoted to Sous Chef in 2020, working closely with Chef Gabriel Massip and Executive Chef Fabrizio Schenardi.
“I’ve been fortunate to work with a lot of talented chefs along the way who have a teaching mindset,” says Si. “I’m incredibly patient and truly understand what it’s like to come from nothing.”
Her hard work, dedication and humble attitude helped earn her the role of Capa Chef, a promotion bestowed in summer 2022. “I still see myself as one of the cooks, just my job duties have changed a bit,” adds Si. “Chef Gabe is really the reason why I am here now. He showed me so much and guided me throughout this process.”
Si loves the creativity behind the menu at Capa, noting that with the robust options on the expansive menu, no matter one’s dietary preferences, there’s something for everyone. She also appreciates the variety of cooking methods used to ensure the perfect flavour. “We sous vide the chicken, the lamb, and more before finishing it by searing on the wood-fire grill,” she says, noting that while sous vide cooking may take more time, the precision of it ensures success, and the style really seals in the juices of the meat. “I couldn’t cook any other way now.”
In addition, Si loves how the American oak wood used by Capa’s grill really imparts a unique flavour to the proteins grilled. “We tasted the results of meats cooked on at least 10 other woods, including hickory, peach and pecan, before deciding this was the winner,” she says. Si also is pleased that Capa now offers the pluma Iberico cut of meat, an exceptionally tender, succulent pork loin from Spain. “It’s the wagyu of pork - very marbled, juicy and flavourful.”
Si is seemingly always cooking, even in her downtime at home; she has a hobby of crafting miniature foods. Tiny edible creations, typically quarter-size or less, is a trend that many follow on social media platforms. While food miniatures are often made of clay, Si takes pride in her miniature food creations being 100% edible—tiny versions of an actual dish. “The other chefs know about this, and if they find a mini tomato, grape or strawberry, they save them for me!” says Si, who has truly found a hobby that enables her to combine her love of art and food in one interesting, creative format.