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The best time to be a foodie is now

chandigarh Updated: Jan 22, 2014 10:18 IST
Nanki Singh

From working as a sous-chef (second in command) at top hotels and restaurants in the UK to finally returning to India, chef Vaibhav Kaushish has seen a big change in the way the world eats food. Acknowledging that there is now a growing interest in the food and beverage business, Vaibhav says the good thing is that multiple job opportunities are springing up.

Based in Delhi, the chef believes that the rising popularity of cookery-based shows and celebrity chefs is definitely helping raise awareness in food. Moreover, the entry of various multi-national corporations in the country over the past few years, he points out, has provided a variety in terms of jobs.

"Until 2003, the only available options of employment in the F&B industry were in five-star hotel or stand-alone restaurants. But, with the opening of restaurant chains, there is more diversity in terms of work as most MNCs are interested in entering India and the Middle East after having ventured in the US," adds Vaibhav, who has done master’s in culinary arts (specialisation in kitchen) from the University of City & Guilds, London.

Having worked at prestigious hotels such as Strand Palace and The Ritz-Carlton, UK, the chef is of the opinion that five-star properties are still too hierarchical and not very open to change. “I have given lectures at places where chefs from these hotels are also present, and I can see that they are still stuck in their old ways,” says Vaibhav.

In terms of work ethics, he believes that though the labour charges are very high, everyone is treated at par. “Everyone is equal there. I came back to India, though, because I always knew that I wanted to work and settle here; my family, friends and my entire life is here,” he says further, adding, “I don’t have to work all day here unlike in the UK, where I was studying all day and then working in the evenings.”

Vaibhav, who is currently serving as manager, culinary innovations and supply chain, Chili’s, India, says he gives a lot of importance to the aesthetic appeal and arrangement of the dishes. In food choices, he picks chicken wings and nachos as his favourites. “I like that people can bond over food,” he smiles.