Family occasions in Benjamin’s home were never simple occasions. One of nearly 30 close cousins, Benjamin says holidays and family celebrations were always big affairs, with food featuring as the primary focus point.
Alongside his younger sister Eliza, Benjamin was raised in Glen Forrest in the Perth Hills, developing an early love and appreciation for sustainable food production from his father who worked as a farmer.
After graduating from Perth’s Guildford Grammar in 2006, Benjamin commenced degrees in Law and Commerce from Murdoch University. In his final year he was selected as one of six students competing nationally for a Law Student of the Year award, an achievement he says was the greatest throughout his education.
After university, Benjamin took a year off to travel, driving across the United States in a van for three months with his best mate. The trip cemented his love of big, bold flavours as he learnt to cook southern style BBQ. The boys then trekked through Canada where Benjamin worked under a fleischmeister (a German ‘meat master’), before travelling across Europe - exploring the food scenes of France, Italy, Greece and Germany. This was a big year of personal growth for Benjamin, and tasting and experimenting with different cuisine styles encouraged him to start cooking with different techniques. Nowadays, Benjamin takes off to a new country, and a new food culture, whenever he can – learning all that is possible along the way.
Benjamin is now the co-director of a law firm in Perth, but says food remains his passion, citing French-born Perth chef Alain Fabregues, as his food idol.
Following MasterChef, Benjamin seeks to gain experience in kitchens and one day open his own small restaurant, focussing on fresh, locally grown seasonal, sustainable and organic produce.