‘It’s time we take our restaurants to people’s homes’

In a conversation with BW Hotelier, Chef Anirban Dasgupta, Executive Chef, Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Nashik talks about the importance of healthy and fresh food, sustainability and bringing creativity in menus

Today, food cannot just be deemed as a source of nourishment to the body. It helps in satiating one’s mind and soul and also brings people from different backgrounds and cultures together. Chef Anirban Dasgupta, Executive Chef, Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, who holds an expertise in world cuisine is well acquainted with this philosophy and aims to make use of innovation and technology to make food fresher and healthier. Having worked with recognised brands like Hyatt, Marriott, Taj and ITC, he has established a firm foothold in the industry and has acquired finesse in East Asian, Japanese, Italian and Mediterranean cuisines.    

The Smoked Vine Restaurant, Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Nashik

Making healthy synonymous with Tasty  

Bringing to light the importance of adopting fresh and local food, Chef Dasgupta says, “I feel that ‘healthy food’ today has become a misnomer as more and more people across the world are being lured by branded and marketed products that try to push the ‘organic’ or ‘health’ theory superficially. To me, healthy food translates to fresh and micro-local food. My food philosophy and core beliefs have always been cooking with freshly harvested local produce and cooking with complete honesty. Taste is an acquired characteristic but there is no reason why it shall diminish with healthier food. It’s a myth that healthy food is less tasty, in fact, healthier food is great not only for your body but also for your soul.”    

Acquiring technological know-how for a better future  

According to Chef Dasgupta, getting tech-savvy and adapting technology is the key to bagging more opportunities in the food business. Highlighting the same, he says, “I think without a doubt that the biggest technological advancement in the kitchen business has been the rise of the on-the-go mobile/ online app ordering trend. It would be paradoxical in today’s times if hotels shy away from the need of the hour. We too need to move with the times. For example, Starbucks alone clocks three million mobile transactions in an hour around the world and it’s time we take our restaurants to people’s homes as it’s the future of the food and beverage industry.”  

Ensuring sustainability and zero food wastage  

Giving an insight to his operations to ensure sustainability, right from the kitchen shelves to the plate, Chef Dasgupta puts in, “Sustainability in food comes easy to me. I visit the city’s markets regularly, ensuring fresh ingredients are on the plate across the restaurants I helm. I also make sure that there are the least number of vegetables stored in my walk-ins and refrigerators. What I source today must be consumed today.”  

He further expresses his concern around food wastage and adds, “Food wastage is a big no-no for me. With this country’s considerable population not affording two timely meals, as a chef I see it as my basic responsibility to ensure that there is the least amount of wastage in restaurants’ kitchen operations and consumption. I achieve that ‘No Bin Days’, ‘Wastage of the Day’ awareness programmes and ‘Recycle with Responsibility’ training as introduced in the kitchen of the restaurants at Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Nashik.”    

Joy of comfort food  

“Today’s well-travelled guests prefers innovative dishes. Having said this, the present trend is without a doubt towards fresh eating and soulful comfort food as compared to experimental cuisine which has taken an enormous backseat post-Covid19. However, I do believe the trend of experimental foods shall be back soon and we will be challenged yet again to do create something new which is what brings in the adrenalin rush in a chef’s life,” he opines.   

Holding the roots  

Having spent years in perfecting and gaining expertise in Italian cuisine, he remarks on the specialty and USP of Italian cooking. “It is popular because it’s soulful. In Italy, they still believe in going back to their grandmother’s kitchen (Nona’s Cucina) to explore authentic recipes and dishes that ensure ingredients and basic cooking techniques are prioritised. Italians have stayed true to their roots, cooked with their own hands, and have retained ‘traditions’ as their USP,” Chef Dasgupta shares, adding, “We have maintained this philosophy at The Smoked Vine, our multi-cuisine restaurant at Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Nashik where Italian cuisine is one of our highlights.”   

‘C’ for creativity  

According to Chef Dagupta, food cost goals cannot be a deterrent in being creative with a menu. “Creativity today shall revolve around freshness of food ingredients and several experimentations that can be done with local produce which is an absolute drift for what five-star hotel chefs practised. We used to see only important international ingredients coming in tonnes to build ‘creative’ menus. Thus, I believe we are in much better space now,” he maintains.    

Learnings for future chefs  

Underlining the characteristics a skilled chef must possess, he stresses on the importance of self-dignity and confidence. “Self-dignity comes first in any occupation. Gaining confidence in one’s craft and to mentor the next generation of chefs is something where one can make a mark and leave a legacy of culinary expertise for the next 100 years. I believe more and more executive chefs need to focus on their culinary offerings in terms of tastier and fresher food, it always starts with that,” he says. 



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Chef Anirban Dasgupta Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa


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