Chef Ryan Dubasak
una Bella is deceiving. Tucked away in a normal looking shopping center on Lake Hamilton, it looks like any other small local restaurant. Then, you open the front door and the aroma of fresh garlic, basil, thyme and oregano wrap around you like a warm coat—inviting you into the hidden pocket of Italy here in Hot Springs.
Executive chef Ryan Dubasak has been mastering the art of Italian food for most of his life. At age 13 he was washing dishes in a restaurant his brother worked at when a chef from Florence, Italy, moved in. Dubasak jumped at the opportunity to learn under the native Italian and later received more formal training at Newbury College.
“I was taught from a young age to always use fresh ingredients,” Dubasak said.“It’s the Italian way!”
Everything at Luna Bella is fresh. They make their own salad dressings, bread, sauce and stocks. The veal stock takes up to 96 hours before it is ready to cook with.
“We show up early and work hard to make sure everything we do is something to be proud of.” said Dubasak
Dubasak says “we” a lot, referring to his sous chef, a Hot Springs native, David Garcia.
“He is really my right hand man. He makes all of our desserts from scratch and I really couldn’t do it without him.” said Dubasak. Ryan Dubasak Executive Chef Luna Bella
What inspired you to become a chef? When I was 13 I got a job as a dishwasher at a restaurant my brother worked at. A chef moved in from Florence, Italy, and I got the opportunity the learn under him.
Best thing you have ever eaten:
Osso Bucco Best cooking advice you have ever received:
Always use fresh ingredients
Fresh thyme and butter
Wild Bites (formerly Cafe la Fortuna) in Boston, Mass.
Something few people know about you:
I’m a New England Patriots fan
Favorite thing about Hot Springs: It is very relaxed and friendly. We also have a good variety of homemade food in town.