Chef Marcelo Ballardin, Latin flavors shining in Belgium

  • Belgian 1 Star chef
  • Gault&Millau Belux Young Chef of Flanders
  • Awarded 50 Best Discovery 2019

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Restaurant OAK

It is probably one of the best restaurant in Ghent at the moment in the province of Oost-Vlaanderen in Belgium. Its owner and the chef, Marcelo Ballardin, originally from Brazil with Italian roots, is a notable young chef who has gained experience in top European restaurants.

He started his career in culinary field at the London Cordon Bleu School.  His passion and enthusiasm brought him to, among others, 1 Lombard Street in London, 3* Hertog Jan in Bruges,3* Geranium Copenhagen, 3* Oud Sluis and 2* Dinner by Heston in London. Marcelo Ballardin was also a ‘food developer’ at Pure C in Cadzand to work out new dishes together with chef Syrco Bakker.

International recognition

After having worked many renowned restaurants in Europe, he opened his own restaurant “OAK” in Gent. in 2014. Since the opening, the storm has been going on and Marcelo Ballardin has impressed his clientele with balanced creations that always have plenty of fun.

Marcelo Ballardin cooks with seasonal, fresh ingredients and has developed a very personal style, excelling in combining flavors and textures in an impressive way, like local ingredients combined with Asian spices, mixed with Mediterranean herbs and a South American accent. In 2015, Gault & Millau honored Chef Marcelo as Young Chef of Flanders and he was chosen as one of the best at the Native Cooking Awards in Denmark.

In 2018, OAK restaurants gained 1 star in Michelin guide and Chef Marcelo won a Korean cooking battle called “Hansik Daechup” a famous TV program. Chef Marcelo Ballardin is gaining more and more international recognition in recent years. 



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