Title: Executive Chef, Owner
Company: Shaibu’s Garden Oasis
Location: St. John, Virgin Islands
Chef Shaibu Abdulai, executive chef and owner of Shaibu’s Garden Oasis, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Business Owners for dedication, achievements, and leadership in locally sourced and whole-food fine dining.
Mr. Abdulai is a chef and entrepreneur whose career has focused on preparing whole, natural foods in unique and creative ways. Born and raised in Ghana, he came to the United States in 2003 and studied at Stratford University before being accepted to the Culinary Institute of America, graduating in 2008 with a Bachelor’s degree in hospitality administration and management. Although food and cooking were lifelong passions for Mr. Abdulai, he initially struggled to overcome a cultural bias that coded culinary arts as “women’s work” in order to pursue his dreams of becoming a chef. He graduated from the Culinary Institute of America into the depths of an economic recession, and spent the next several years traveling around the world to wherever he could find work.
Mr. Abdulai worked in high-end restaurants in Costa Rica, Washington, D.C., New York, at Denali National Park in Alaska and at the Canyon Bay Resort in the United States Virgin Islands. After honing his culinary skills on a wide range of cuisines and settings and developing an extensive knowledge of wine, Mr. Abdulai opened his first business, Shaibu’s Gourmet Grab and Go, in 2013. In 2021, he partnered with a friend, sushi chef Alexis Herrera, to open Shaibu’s Garden Oasis in St. John, Virgin Islands. Mr. Abdulai is a member of the Chamber Rotisserie and the American Culinary Federation, and an award-winning chef with gold medals from the Culinary Competition of New York, Culinary Skills USA, and a bronze medal from the American Culinary Federation Competition. His restaurants have been featured in local media, and he hopes to continue building his business with a focus on elevating the culinary culture of the Virgin Islands in the coming years.
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