Tropical Leaves

BIO: My background story that nobody cares about.

Nobody actually reads these things, right? But just in case you are peaNUTS enough and are reading this, I'll putt some effort in this: I'm Hendrawanto, was born in Jakarta, grew up in Almere. Music was my passion in my younger years. Played in a (rock/metal)band until I went to Art School in Arnhem when I was 19. Got my Bachelor degree, went to do my Masters at the Design Academy in Eindhoven. I taught myself how to cook during my years as a Design Student and also worked in the kitchen of a very busy restaurant for 5 years. That taught me the ropes. Teamwork. Speed, distance and timing. While studying, I also started practicing the Brazilian Martial Arts called Capoeira devotedly, for about 8 years. That helped me to overcome so many personal obstacles and stimulated my personal growth. Never having the ambition to make my living as a Chef/Caterer though and still dreaming about being a Rock Star and/or Stand-Up Comedian, I started working at an Art Company and as a Marketeer. Working in the Marketing Industry as a Freelance Copywriter for 7 years got me really sad though. A very challenging and creative work environment, yes, but I didn't want to look at-and treat people as mere consumers. We're all humans after all. And buying more stuff is not the meaning of life, in my humble opinion. So I decided I didn't want to work for the Devil anymore by continuing to emotionally manipulate people into buying more and more stuff they don't need. After moving to Amsterdam, I did a friend a favour catering her exhibition opening. People attending the event liked my food a lot and complimented me in hordes, which gave me a nice, tingling sensation on the inside. Also, somebody hired me to do the catering at his upcoming exhibition right on the spot. And that Catering Job landed another Catering Job, etc. Before I knew it, I was becoming a professional one-man Catering Service. I decided to organise my own pop-up Restaurant concept, named Foodie Call, where I would serve 30 people a 3-course-meal. Every dish was named after a girl I once kissed. These Culinary 'One-Night-Stands' where fun and created a little buzz within Amsterdam. Then I started collaborating with another Chef, named ourselves the "Kookkollektief" (Cook Collective) and together we served our food at Latei on the Zeedijk, the nicest Café in Amsterdam for 3 years. The founder of the Food Line Up tasted my take on Gado Gado during her workshop for Food Truck Entrepreneurs and she forced me to be amongst the Line Up for her Food Festival "Het Hoofgerecht", although I wasn't a Festival Caterer at all! Not by a longshot. But she insisted and helped me making it happen. At that Festival I couldn't work fast and hard enough to get rid of the line in front of my borrowed Foodtruck. People just kept coming and coming for more. It was exhausting, but so amazing to notice how many people enjoyed my food that weekend. More Festivals would follow (Kip Festival, Roots Festival, etc.). Then We Canteen selected me to be part of their revolutionary Catering Concept within the Universities of Amsterdam. The next 6 years I would become one of the most popular Caterer's inside the Restaurant's of the UvA Campus's in Amsterdam. Preparing and selling my own specialties from behind my own food-counter to hundreds of students and teachers per day. On the side I would do Business Lunches at Corporate Offices via We Canteen (World Trade Center, Asics, Tom Tom, Bink Bank, etc) and special Events via The Food Line Up (The Foods Stage, Cine-Mangé, Gay Pride, etc.). Then Ome Adje and me created the Amsterdam Stoner Cookbook, a little cookbook with crazy recipes that'll get rid of the Munchies for sure. A great Souvenir for all the Stoner Tourists flocking the streets and Coffeeshops of Amsterdam. On our Amsterdam Stoner Cookbook Youtube Channel we created content for 18 recipe-video's. The popular Dutch TV-Programme 'RTL-Boulevard' made a 5 minute item about our cookbook. Now I have to be incognito at the Albert Heijn and stuff. Anyway. At the end of the day, I've been Cooking, Catering and Cheffing throughout Amsterdam for about 10 years. 

Now, during the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown, after a year of not being able to do my regular work as a Caterer...I decided to do Private Chef gigs. Hoping that this will help me survive until...who knows when this pandemic ends?