Jamshedpur, May 20: Indians can be proud of Atul Kochhar, the first “desi” chef to twice receive a Michelin star in London. Jamshedpur residents can be doubly proud of him as he was born here.
Kochhar (38) is the proud owner of Indian restaurant Benaras at Berkely Square in London.
After being mentioned in BBC’s Great British Menu, he is competing for a chance to showcase 21st century British cooking to internationally renowned chefs at an event.
Kochhar has been in London since 1994. He began his career abroad as head chef at one of the leading eateries in Mayfair, The Tamarind. By the age of 31, he was the proud owner of the highly prestigious Michelin star, awarded for excellent cooking standards coupled with specialities and wines of the highest quality.
Benares is Kochhar’s most ambitious venture, where the menu reflects his passion for food from all corners of the sub-continent.
His menu tickles the taste buds with an exciting range of 140 varieties of Indian street food from various corners of the country.
Presently, he is considering expanding business and is concentrating on two independent but ambitious projects.
“Talks are on with several people in London and we are looking at opening late this year or early next year,” Kochhar notes in a web interview.
Talitta, an official at Benaras, told The Telegraph: “He has tremendous talent in experimenting with food. The results are only too delicious.”
Kochhar trained and worked with the Oberoi Group of Hotels in New Delhi. Even there, he established himself as a star.
He is forever trying out new ingredients and researching about food. The chef is known for his “vibrancy of food” and the use of correct spices in preparation.
He is also the author of cookery book Indian Essence and is working on a second book on Indian vegetarian food. He is a regular in the food show TV circuit in the UK and other countries. His recipes have a wide fan following through magazines and newspapers.