Food & drink
Meet the Chef: The Golden Fork’s Letizia Vella reveals her keys to success
Her Attard restaurant has quickly made a name for itself since opening in 2019, even earning a coveted mention in the Michelin Guide for Malta.

Sarah Muscat Azzopardi

Founded and run by Chef Letizia Vella, The Golden Fork has quickly made a name for itself since opening its doors in 2019, even earning a coveted mention in the Michelin Guide for Malta.

golden chef

It should come as no surprise then, that the talented chef behind it admits to having a passion for cooking from an early age, “whilst witnessing the love in each of my mother's dishes” where, Letizia reveals, “the level of flexibility and work around each dish drew me towards this beautiful industry, leading to eventually opening my own restaurant.”

Reviewing her personal milestones within the industry so far, Letizia says it is undoubtedly the ability to work abroad, to discover different cultures and cuisines, which helped her gain knowledge, experience and confidence. All of this would lead up to her most recent milestones: opening her own restaurant and gaining a Michelin recognition a few short months later.  

golden chef

“Such recognition fills me with passion and encourages me to face new challenges,” she smiles. 

Describing her vision behind the restaurant, Letizia explains, “at The Golden Fork, we offer a modern Mediterranean menu, and aim to please the palate of our guests, whilst coming up with creative new dishes. Ultimately, our main aim is to provide our guests with an astounding experience complemented with fine food and service.” 

And as Head Chef, Letizia’s aim is to contribute towards the evolution of the dishes and overall experience whilst building a strong team, which forms the backbone of The Golden Fork. “I believe that a team that grows together and shares knowledge is the key to success,” she reveals. 

Turning her attention to the local culinary industry, the chef believes that it has been evolving, and we have seen vast improvements and substantial investments during the past years. “Diners are after refined tastes and experiences which we are here to provide,” she says, adding, “I also believe that the next generation of chefs entering the industry will contribute positively to the growth and improvement of the restaurant scene, through fresh ideas and modern cooking.”

This does not come without its challenges however, she reveals. “A challenge in this industry is balancing family and your social life with your career. I strongly believe that for a chef to keep a fresh mind, they need to obtain balance in life, to prolong their career,” Letizia says, going on to highlight another challenge local chefs face: sourcing ingredients and maintaining consistency.

“However, I believe that with a combined effort, through passion and communication, such challenges can be tackled,” she asserts.

golden chef

And while the island does come with its challenges, it also serves as a source of inspiration. For Letizia, traditional Maltese cuisine evokes fond childhood memories, and continues to inspire her cooking.  

Describing local cuisine as “rich in taste and flavour”, the chef reveals one ingredient that she always keeps on her menu: octopus. “It reminds me of my childhood days, helping my mum to prepare the dish and slow cooking it for Sunday lunch. I use the exact same recipe for my restaurant, with a modern twist.” 

Looking ahead, Letizia admits that due to COVID-19, the vision for the future is complex, however, one thing will always remain at The Golden Fork: “we are committed to keep refining our offering and maintaining high standards.”

31st October 2021


Sarah Muscat Azzopardi
Written by
Sarah Muscat Azzopardi
A keen traveller with an interest in most things, Sarah loves her island home as much as she loves getting away from it, and enjoys discovering and re-discovering the gems, hidden corners and unique stories of her native Malta and Gozo.

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