Dibyendu Roy, Executive Chef at Marriott Resort and Spa
We are pleased to bring to you an interview of Chef Roy, Executive Chef of The Marriott, Goa , who believes in “creating experiences and not just events” through his food.
Making people happy is what prompted him to opt for F&B and till date, despite 17 years of international as well as Pan India experience, the smile on a guest’s face after the taking the first bite of his creations is something that still gives him immense pleasure.
After gaining a degree in Hotel Management from IHM Kolkata in 2002, Chef Roy joined the Hyatt Regency as part of the pre-opening team and was there for six years. At this point, ripe for a change and new challenges, he got an offer from Ritz Carlton, USA. After 2 years in the USA, he was transferred to Shanghai, China. China was a huge journey that lasted nine and a half years during which time he was a part of at least 8-10 pre openings of big brands that included JwMarriott and Courtyard, renaissance, Marriott . With more than eleven years of international experience under his belt, he felt it was time to return to his homeland. As humble as he is, he says “Experience is limitless ,the more you experience the more you learn.” He keeps himself constantly updated by reading and sharing food inspired and related articles and photographs. Will he write a book in the near future? He laughs and says, “Only once I reach perfection and cannot be challenged.”
His take on challenges faced by those working in this field is very interesting. According to him, challenges are dynamic. As a new entrant, the challenge is to master recipes; as a senior lead, the challenge is that your team masters recipes and delivers accordingly; and as an executive chef, the challenge is to bring together the skills of the kitchen and the tastes of the guest to create an amazing experience. He achieves this goal by keeping his staff motivated with a simple thank you or a gesture of appreciation. He says, “Salary and appraisals are important but at the end of the day, for people working day in and day out in the hot and humid environs of the kitchen, a simple thank you or a word of appreciation goes a long way to keep the motivation levels high.”
In terms of the Hotel Management courses in IHMs, he says that the curriculum needs to be updated. Students need more exposure and practical training. Guest speakers would be able to bring real time experiences to the table and prepare students for life in the industry.
To young people wishing to join this industry he says, “Take your industrial training very seriously because this is what will help you to choose your area of work and prepare you for the real world.”
Chef has some very valid pointers for young professionals aspiring to work in the kitchen.
– Do not run after designation or salary. Be patient. Give yourself time to understand recipes and get the feel of spice blends and food combination
-understand your guests’ palate preferences by talking to them and deliver food that is simple and exquisitely presentable with an experience and then salary and designation will run after you .
Plating and presentation are very important, but not at the cost of taste and flavour. Never compromise on taste and flavour. “Presentation is 10% but the taste is 90% of a dish”, he says.
– Make your basic strong,do not try to climb the ladder fast because then your fall fast too. Getting your foundation strong and right is very important because that will help you to sustain your growth
-There is no short cut to success. Work hard, keep an open mind and “learn from everybody because everyone has something to teach and share with you.”
Here’s wishing all the very best to Chef Roy whose message to all young professionals is, “Whatever be your dream or motivation, love and enjoy what you do and you will be successful.”