Q&A with Kainaz Messman
How do you spend your spare time?
I was lucky to meet a French couple who are retired patissiers on holiday in Mumbai. They ate at Theo's and were so pleased that they invited me to Paris, to get acquainted with their chefs. I spent a week learning new recipes such as macaroons and the seasonal brioche, which are now the popular features on my menu. I also take frequent trip to France and London to sample desserts across cafes and patisseries.
Who are your role models?
Nigel Slater, the award winning British food author, journalist and broadcaster. He reinforced my belief in keeping food real and uncomplicated. Gordon Ramsay comes across as a real taskmaster on TV, however he has superb work ethic. Pierre Herme is of course the God of pastry. Till I learned about Herme, I believed that pastry could either look good or taste good. But he shattered that myth. His stores across Paris, Tokyo and such are considered pastry art galleries.
What are your personal goals?
I'm eager to learn a musical instrument. I'm also extremely health conscious - working out is a daily feature and I run the marathon each year. I also want to start a cookery school. On the professional front, Theo's is still a drop in the ocean, operating from one locality. I've had offers from UK and Canada to invest in the café abroad, but India is still an interesting market for me.