Chef S.T. Dishes On How He Became Mariah Carey’s Personal Chef

From planning luxury dinner parties to creating a pop-up restaurant, in Los Angeles Chef S.T. (better known as Sarkis T. Takvoryan) has done it all.  Did we also mention he is the private chef to Mariah Carey?

We caught up with him recently to discuss Mariah’s favorite dish, his pop-up restaurant and launching his luxury concierge service.

How did the opportunity to become Mariah Carey’s personal chef come about?

It was through a lot of hard work. In the past, I was doing catering and hosting a lot of big events. Clients like Chanel would be booking and then members of Mariah’s team started reaching out directly to me. Right now, Mariah is on her “Caution World Tour” so I am off, but when she returns, I will probably return cooking for her.

What is her favorite dish?

It has to be the Nova lox, which is thin buttery sliced Norwegian salmon that tastes almost like butter. I top it off with lemon juice, capers that give it just the right amount of salt and with the combination of the silkiness, it is just delicious.

Photo Credit: Chef S.T.

In addition to being a chef to the stars, you also curate luxury dinner parties. Have you had any unusual requests over the years?

I did have to travel on a donkey from a yacht to go to the top of Santorini to get clams. It was a great adventure. [laughs]

What are some of your favorite meals to prepare?

Dishes, would be very hard to pick. But cuisine has to be my Armenian-Greek background. I like to bring Japanese cuisine as well. I took some crash courses at Nobu so I like to mix it up with Mediterranean food and see what ingredients I can switch up so it can become a harmonious marriage. We make this Unagi eel over a bed of lentil rice medley with cayenne and nutmeg over avocado. There is a buildup with that dish that is almost seven seconds long. It really takes you on a flavor adventure.

I’d love to cook for the Kardashians one day because I am Armenian and also to show them what modern Armenian food really can be. Being a personal chef is completely different than knowing how to cook. I put my heart and soul into making a dish and being the perfect person to make that dish is the model I have been going on.

Photo Credit: Chef ST

Tell us about your pop-up restaurant, Mood.

It’s a members-only experiential supper clubMy partnering Chef Michael Kay and I bring together these amazing humans that go through a screening process to sign up. It’s often a 40-person communal table filled with strangers who, by the end of the night, end up being great friends. It’s magic being able to be create these environments for our members. It’s a night filled with food, music and great vibes. The dinners range from $200 to $800 per person.

What’s up next for you?

I am launching a luxury concierge service called ELEVEX for people who are looking for a chef to deliver the same experience that celebrities receive. People love to be pampered. It’s an opportunity to experience that luxury treatment right at home.

Check out Chef S.T’s Instagram pictures here.