Today we meet chef Braco Sanjin from O’zlata.
You must all know of O’zlata by now; a new favorite Split restaurant tucked away in the 15th-century Golden Gate courtyard of Diocletian’s Palace. While we’ve made you certain it will be hard to come by a better ambiance than this, O’zlata’s perks do not only lie within their magnificent space: they have an incredible chef to boot.
Today we introduce you to Braco Sanjin, head chef of O’zlata. Originally from Rijeka, Sanjin has played a part in some of the finest culinary establishments up and down the Croatian coast, dipping his toes in the gastro meccas from Istria to Split. Having cooked for some of the most famous celebrities and musicians along the way (Sting and Joe Cocker, to name a few), Sanjin finally settled in Split 15 years ago where he led the comestible creations at Kadena. After a nearly ten year stint there, Sanjin was ready for a new adventure, and O’zlata would be the new kitchen he would call home.
After arriving at O’zlata this spring, Sanjin crafted a structured menu, drawing influences from his past and prowess to achieve a perfect compilation from bites to entrees. Clinching onto his culinary principals, Sanjin stresses the importance of locally sourced ingredients and is said to be using the same suppliers he’s trusted in for years.
Using a philosophy for O’zlata’s menu that encourages indigenous cooking in a modern way, Sanjin has constructed menu items that include few ingredients but are powerful in presentation in flavor.
A signature dish of the chef is the Vis brodetto (stew), “our way.” Influenced by the rich history of the dish and the hundreds of variations that exist, Sanjin was motivated by the concept of “not throwing anything away.” Therefore, the Vis brodetto at O’zlata is made from a cream of beans that is cooked in a stew and is enhanced with white fish, clams, and shrimps. A unique part of the dish is the addition of kadaif, a skinny noodle used in Greek and Middle Eastern desserts.
Another unexpected culinary combination by Sanjin that you can find on the O’zlata menu is “Foie Gras and King Prawns,” topped with a sauce of oranges, cognac, and turmeric and a Granny Smith apple cream.
And for a real taste of indigenous ingredients? Try the scallops in seaweed jelly with Dalmatian bacon powder.
O’zlata has continued with their famous wine pairing evenings and themed nights which have dabbled into the gastro delights from Argentina to Italy – offering something for everyone to enjoy.
With a menu so carefully crafted and compelling, we imagine your taste buds are tingling by now.