Alumni Connect: ‘I plan to open a themed restaurant in Pune’
Kulkarni says meeting Dalal inspired him to be a chef .pune Updated: Mar 16, 2018 15:08 IST
Prasad V Kulkarni has tasted success early. At 30, he brings his 14 years of experience in food and hospitality industry in the country and abroad to become an entrepreneur, bar tender and trainer, kitchen consultant, food production academic trainer and television celebrity chef-cum-anchor.
Describe your educational degree?
I did my schooling from Modern English Medium School, Shivajinagar, and opted for minimum competency vocational courses (MCVC) in bakery and confectionery from the Maharashtra State Institute of Hotel Management and Catering Technology (MSIHMCT). This is where I learnt the basics and later headed to pursue higher diploma in Hospitality Management from Kohinoor IMI, Khandala, in affiliation with IMI Switzerland, from 2004 – 2007. Later, I earned a postgraduate diploma in Hospitality Management, EHWLC London (2007-2009). I was always interested in bakery and these courses offered me a specialisation.
Who was your inspiration?
I always wanted to be a chef since the age of six. I was influenced by Chef Sanjeev Kapoor and Tarla Dalal. In fact, I also got an opportunity to interact with Dalal at a bookshop and it helped me a great deal to make up my mind at the young age to become a chef. Kitchen is where I wanted to be.
What did you pursue for your post-graduation?
I went into food production and was also keen on understanding the working of a bar, so I trained for that while studying in London. I always wanted to join the bakery segment. The food products made should be unique, tasty and one cannot afford mistakes. I interned in several hotels like European Culinary graduate – Apavou group (Mauritius) and Le Meridien (Pune) as a kitchen trainee; Indian Resort (Le Morne, Mauritius) for management lessons; Mimosa Med-Grill restaurant in London as a grill chef but what I loved most was being a night baker at Napkets Bakery in London.
What are your current projects?
I returned from London to launch my own restaurants ‘Mejwani’, named after the Marathi cookery programme with the same name that I hosted, and ‘Rendevous’, which is now managed by my team. I run Foodeshwar, with its six outlets in the city catering to more than 10,000 people from the IT sector. I have also judged many cookery shows and contests.
What are your future plans?
I teach at MITCON Institute for Training and Development as an associate head training faculty and is on the panel at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Technical University, Maharashtra, for designing food production syllabus for bachelor’s and master’s degrees programmes across Maharashtra. I have plans to open a themed restaurant in Pune.