Ayesha Nurdjaja

A Brooklyn native of Italian-Indonesian heritage, JBF Best Chef: New York State nominee Ayesha Nurdjaja knew food was her passion from a young age. After graduating from the Institute of Culinary Education, she worked her way up the ranks at various New York City establishments including Lidia Bastianich’s Felidia, Bar Aristinal, Picholine and Missy Robbins’ A Voce. Ayesha went on to join The Bowery Group, where she is currently Chef & Partner at Shuka, the beloved Soho gem and Shukette, the Chelsea hotspot that opened in 2021 to national acclaim. Ayesha has earned a devoted following for her vibrant Eastern Mediterranean fare and distinct seasonal culinary approach. She is passionate about inspiring the next generation of chefs, holding community engagement roles such as board member at The Sylvia Center, chef collaborator with Food Education Fund, and a member of the US Department of State Culinary Corps. In her free time, Ayesha enjoys a celebratory glass of champagne, traveling everywhere from the Amalfi Coast to the Aegean Sea, making new Spotify playlists (running the gamut from Celine Dion to 90’s hip hop) and procuring antique pieces for her ever-expanding earring collection.