Who am I ?

Dipankar Das.

That’s the name my parents had chosen for me and I have been known by that ever since.

I was born and brought up in the joyful city of Kolkata, (more popular as Calcutta) in India, though my current sojourn is in New Delhi, slaving away for the last twenty years in the food industry where pleasure meets madness. The heady concoction of beautiful boulevards, lip-smacking food, the elegant remnants of British colonial era in Lutyens’ Delhi, dung-splattered streets, marauding morons behind the wheels, and where the scorching heat of summers makes anybody’s senses wobble like a blancmange. But take it into your strides and you will enjoy this intoxication of order in chaos.

Delhi is a city of arrogance and power, of maniacal brutality at the drop of a hat, of uncouth display of wealth but also a city of faith and compassion, of being the Indian epicenter of world cuisine and of course opportunities. And these positives of the city persuaded me to explore and settle down in Delhi from Kolkata which is also known as the paradise of delectable food.

Intrinsically I am an introvert, but with the right kind of audience (by ‘right’ I mean definitely connected to food), I can be pretty garrulous.

By profession, I am an hotelier and have been associated with the hospitality industry since the beginning of my career. From my adolescence, I had a natural aptitude for cooking. I would tinker around for hours in the kitchen, driving my mother crazy with my experiments, not to mention the mess I left behind.

With the passing years I developed a strong affinity towards anything related to food and beverages. Fortunately, I got selected in one of the most renowned catering colleges of India. Although I was and still am passionate about Food Production, I focused my energies to concentrate on Food and Beverage Management and Controls. The simple reason being- I never wanted to face the compulsions of a Chef in the industry bound by formal standard recipes, ungodly hours and sometimes frustration. To me, cooking is a passion, a hobby not restricted by the taboos of ‘Haute Cuisine’. Coupled with my experience in management and controls, I am an excellent resource for consultation for greenhorns and veterans both.

Apart, from my obvious responsibilities at my work sphere, I am a voracious reader. I still am old-school and believe e-books can never replace the joy of reading a paperback or a hardcover. My interests include Developing Fusion Recipes, Astrophysics, Philosophy (though a contradiction of sorts), Writing, World Affairs, Espionage Facts and Stories, Hollywood Movies, Travelling to name only a ‘phew’!

I hope the narrative about me hasn’t put you to sleep.

Having said that, let’s launch into the journey of cruising through the world of food and its intricacies.

Lamb Goulash in Red Pimento Sauce

What do I do ?

As mentioned, my current profile is that of Country Head- Food and Beverage (F&B) Management and Controls with one of the leading fine dining restaurant chains with both domestic and overseas presence. In layman’s term, my team is the anti-corruption wing of F&B operations. And as you understand, none of this is possible if as a leader of my team I do not possess an intricate knowledge of food production and service and an instinct for catching the crooks. Just to brief you about what my job entails, below is a list of key impact areas:

Don’t worry if some of the words seem jargon. In my upcoming blogs I shall share with you and explain in details some of the words unique to the hotel and restaurant industry.

Beginning my career as an Executive in Materials Management Department of a 5 star hotel, I steadily climbed up the ladder. As a token of appreciation for my knowledge about food and beverages (especially alcoholic beverages) and my contribution towards automation of Materials Management systems, I was unexpectedly promoted to the position of Asst. Manger- F&B Controls to my surprise and everyone else’s. With more than 15 years of experience, I am presently spearheading the country’s operations of F&B management and Controls.

For most of my career I have worked with 5 star hotels, and chose to move for a different experience in an international fine dining restaurant chain.

When I am not at my work place, I usually write my opinions and thoughts about various issues and share the same with a niche crowd on different social media platforms. I draw absolute fulfillment from the fact that my write-ups have very much been acknowledged and cherished by those who are by and large aligned to my thinking.

I am an avid traveller who believes, “The journey is more beautiful than the destination”. My abode of redemption lies in the lap of the high altitude Himalayas. I love to dine out and experiment with unfamiliar fusion cuisine and deconstruct the same in my own kitchen. I wish, someday I could retrace the path of ‘Bizarre Foods by Andrew Zimmern’.

Pic-3 Blog
A Snap with my family at Chitkul- 12,000 ft above sea level

So what would make my articles distinct from others in the same genre?

However all the above does not justify how my articles would be any different from others?

The answer is, my aspiration is to take you through a journey which will cover the entire range of F&B right from its history, foreign influences on traditional local cuisines, its journey as a tool for revenue generation, management and controls procedures of the F&B industry to our current experimentations of molecular gastronomy and mixology.

I shall of course share many fusion recipes deconstructed from the classical ones and improvising with indigenous ingredients to cater to the regional palate.

Having said that, my blogs will not be limited to recipes only. It will be a win-win both for my readers and me. To top it all, I shall be doing what I always loved to do which is writing and drawing satisfaction by sharing my experience and knowledge with a far larger audience through the digital world.

Your feedback and suggestions will help me tune my articles and in the process will enrich me of course.

Pic-4 Blog

What to expect from my blogs ?

  • To start with I shall take you through a journey of food preferences adopted by early men- our ancestors and how it should be relevant to the modern world
  • How we can throw out of the window our modern conception of healthy food
  • My write-ups will not be India-specific but will address a much larger audience without defined boundaries
  • As we move on, there will be fusion recipes from all around the globe catering to all strata of the human society
  • There will be articles on how to draw a plan to open a new F&B Outlet and general F&B Management
  • I shall guide you on how to plug revenue leakage in an F&B business and various other practical Controls procedures

What motivates me and why now ?

  • To share my expertise, knowledge, ideas and thoughts with those who would be interested and to ensure value addition to their work/enterprise or their quest.
  • Many people possess the necessary expertise and knowledge about food and beverages to succeed in their profession but only a handful has the required skills to coach and guide and present the same in an absorbing and intelligible language.
  • This current world order has provided me with a window of opportunity. It has finally motivated me to push myself to embark on the mission I always loved and dreamed about, which is exploring new avenues with my writing.

To achieve success, whether to do the initial operational planning for launching an F&B outlet or to take it as a hobby, you need to exert your 99% and add it up with the 1% I have to provide.

Why only 1%?

Because, I can only guide you and show you the path, but it’s you only who would have to take actions.

So, stick to your goal and dream big. An ever-expanding dream so big, that it always remains unachievable.

And if you ever need a consultation, just drop me an email at dips@foodcruiseblog.com , and I shall be happy to help you.