Gourmet Galle

Gourmet Galle, a 12 week-long gourmet festival up and down the south coast of Sri Lanka. As a partner to the incredibly successful Galle Literary Festival. Since 2005 the Galle Literary Festival has become one of the most anticipated literary events in south Asia.

Gourmet Galle show cases amazing celebrity and world-renowned chefs along the southern coast of Sri Lanka. The dinners take place in exquisite homes and the finest boutique hotels carefully curated to make each weekend its own unique and incredible event.

Don’t miss out!

Festival Team

Geoffery Peter Dobbs

Festival Founder

Born just a week after Stalin died, Geoffrey lived for 14 years in the Soviet Union, 4 years in Poland and 2 years in the former Yugoslavia, with interval years in India, Italy and England. Of Anglo-Irish and Australian parents, his father was a diplomat and mother a journalist turned best selling author. It was during a holiday, whilst living in Hong Kong, that Geoffrey first discovered Ceylon. He bought the Island of Taprobane in Weligama and opened several hotels. Geoffrey has since been credited with spearheading the boutique hotel industry in Galle, Sri Lanka.

Following the tsunami Geoffrey set up the charity Adopt Sri Lanka, which spent over 4 million dollars alleviating the plight of many Sri Lankans.

After founding the Galle Literary Festival in 2005 to drive tourism and literary excellence in Sri Lanka, he was honoured by the President of Sri Lanka for services rendered to tourism and for the work he did following the Tsunami.

Felicia Sorensen


She is known as, “The Queen of Curries”, and is the World’s Pre-eminent Chef and Expert on Sri Lankan Cuisine, having received the Sri Lanka Presidential National Title of “Sikhamani” for her role as a culinary ambassador of the island nation. Sikhamani Felicia Sorensen is world renown for her curries, chutneys, and roasted spices. She has traveled  and met great fellow Chefs from Asia, Europe, and the Americas, and has won a number of awards including the prestigious Escoffier Award.

A great Chef, food writer, cookbook editor and author, columnist, and Sikhamani; were it not for a twist of fate, none of this might have happened. Felicia spent 30 years in Hong Kong and while working a part time job as receptionist at the Hilton, she found out that  the curry at the coffee shop was lousy. So she proceeded to investigate and went to the coffee shop to let the chef know. She began  to teach him how to cook authentic curries. The news media found out about it and before she knew it, she became a celebrity and her culinary career was off and running.

Her cookbook “Exotic Tastes of Paradise: Art of Sri Lankan Cooking” has been the holy grail of Sri Lankan cookery for almost 40 years.

Giselle Harding

Festival Director

Born to Trinidadian/British parentage, the island of Ceylon has many familiarities for Giselle. Moving to Galle from Dubai a few years ago, Giselle and her husband Joseph De Alwis, opened Wild & the Sage; a quaint independent bookshop on the south coast. The shop quickly established itself as an arts and literary hub, hosting author talks, children’s story time, workshops and bookclubs.

Prior to this Giselle studied Design at Central St Martins and then Camberwell. She went on to pursue a career in the international events industry, working on Olympic Ceremonies, World Expo’s and many UAE Government projects. Along with her love of the written word, Galle Literary Festival has long been a dream and she hopes to nurture the charm already established by the festival and ensure its a staple on the international events calendar.

Eliane Sterchi
Gourmet Galle Manager

Eliane has spent many years between Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Switzerland, Italy and the UK. Having studied at the LSE and Stanford University, worked with the ICRC and UNICEF before moving into broadcasting and media; PR and advertising. She has set up radio stations in Sri Lanka, Malaysia and launched satellite radio channels with WorldSpace in Singapore. A long stint in hospitality, building and setting up a boutique property in Sri Lanka, Sri Villas.

 Eliane brings her expertise, her knowledge of Sri Lanka, and her love of food. In her spare time, she can be found in the kitchen devouring cookery books.

Joseph de Alwis

Creative Director

Born in Sri Lanka, Joseph grew up largely in the Middle East amongst the fast establishing expat scene in the UAE. Inspired by the diversity of the people around him, he began his career in the advertising and marketing industry, starting as a Graphic Designer and later moving into Creative Direction between the UAE and Sri Lanka. It was during a large project for the Dubai Government, when Joe first dipped his toes into the events industry. Fascinated by the fast paced, skies-the-limit approach to communications, Joe went on to work on events projects, collaborating with brands such as Twitter, United Nations, World Government Summit, and GMC.

Notably, he led the creative team responsible for the successful Global Women’s Forum 2020 In 2021, driven by his admiration for the written word, Joseph De Alwis cofounded ‘Wild & the Sage’, an independent bookshop nestled in the charming coastal town of Unawatuna. Today, Joseph De Alwis continues to excel as a purveyor of culture and creativity, enriching the worlds of literature, music, and creativity with his unwavering dedication and professional acumen.

Sajini De Silva
Gourmet Galle 

Sajini was born & raised in Sri Lanka with a brief stint living and studying in the US. Over the last decade have been involved in various aspects of the event and planning industry. From 2000 persons IT global conferences to 400 persons destination weddings. Her passion lies in planning and organizing bespoke intimate family weddings in unique destinations in Sri Lanka. Sajini brings her expertise and her love of bringing people together for exciting events in interesting locations.

She spends her spare time reading and enjoys quality time with her partner and her happy 3 legged dog, Ralfi.

Festival Sponsor

Festival Partner