Home» Star Chef of the Month
Star Chef Shailendra Kekade
Pune born, Chef Shailendra’s love of cooking began in the beginning of his career with the Café Royale at The Oberoi Towers, Mumbai with just a simple approach of combining fresh ingredients and a light uncomplicated touch, thereby nurturing his appetite for foods’ purest flavors.
He followed this early introduction with training in some of America’s finest kitchens under some of the greatest chefs including Chef Gerd Hertel, Chef Peter Haselsberger and Chef Rico Oprandi in Switzerland. It was in these kitchens that his introduction to ingredients from around the world stirred his passion for travel and his desire to look for opportunities abroad.
He has worked at some of Miami’s hottest cruise lines including The Big Red Boats, and Norwegian Cruise Lines where he held the most revered position of “Chef Le Bistro” consistently for three consecutive years. “The Mediterranean has always been of particular interest from a culinary perspective,” explains Shailendra who today is also recognized food stylist across in the food and beverage industry.
“The way the indigenous ingredients have been combined with the flavours and spices of many cultures that inhabited the land…is a genuine home style of fusion” says the recent winner of the title of ”Celebrity Chef” for Pune City, held by Upper Crust, where he competed against the Executive Chefs of the top hotel chains in Pune.
His recent endeavor with India’s favorite food and life style channel FoodFood has him aptly taking over the signature show “Style Chef” where the master chef explains complicated techniques and exotic ingredients, simplified in the most humble manner, taking presentation of food to a whole new level. His approach towards fine cooking is achieved through using simple ingredients and extraordinary combination skills to create menus and plates, which are always a pleasure for the eyes, the tummy and the soul.
Currently working at Stone Water Grill as the Executive Chef and General Manager, Food and Beverage, Chef Shailendra’s menu favours tropically friendly dishes that draw on his classic French training but use reductions and spices to provide richness versus heavy butter or cream in the classical cuisine. He recreates a totally conceptualized menu which demands a lot of knowledge of ingredients and how they merge into one another to entice the Mediterranean’s rich heritage. Shailendra has always been dedicated to improving service standards and developing his business strategy. To make the recipe short and sweet, he keeps in mind that his customers want one thing only – a combination of excellent food, welcoming atmosphere, a great place to relax with family and friends, and to leave only after experiencing what one would reminisce as the ‘perfect meal.’