KOCHI: As I walked in, Colony Clubhouse & Grill at Grand Hyatt Kochi Bolgatty was buzzing with connoisseurs carving to a wonderful easter spread. Full with a live pasta counter, and a myriad of national and international cuisine and a live band, the place brought the spirit of Sunday brunch alive.
Grand Hyatt Kochi Bolgatty holds a special space in the Kochiite’s flavour palate for being true to their theme. From Thai Soul to Malabar Cafe, everything comes as authentic as it can be. Chef Yogender Pal, the new executive chef at the hotel, plans to maintain this virtue while bringing a lot more to the table. Yours truly caught the chef who hails from Himachal Pradesh the day after he got his Covid vaccination shot.
Settling in with a salad, he talks about his culinary journey that is almost two-decades-long. He has worked with leading Indian and International luxury hospitality brands including The Oberoi Hotels and Resorts, Marriott, Hilton, Intercontinental Hotels and Claridges Hotels and Resorts. Chef Yogi is also the recipient of the Times Food Award for Treforni (Best Italian 2018 ), Times Food award for RIKA (Best Modern Asian) and many more recognitions.
As the conversation continued, entered Margarita, Hyatt’s only smiling lady bartender, who is always happy to fetch you a glass of margarita, an offer you would find very hard to refuse. Chef Yogi speaks seven languages. He is also well travelled. One could tell this from the way he chooses to approach the new task at hand - revamping Grand Hyatt’s much-acclaimed offerings.
“For Ramadan, we are bringing down an authentic chef from Hyderabad. The biriyani, nihari and gosht, we want all of it to be authentic. The Ramadan spread will be a refreshing experience for Kochiites,” he says. For Malabar Cafe, Hyatt’s traditional Malayali kitchen, he has even more elaborate plans. “Our chefs Rahmath and Latha will be travelling Kerala’s villages and households, learning and recreating the state’s much-loved hidden flavours,” he says.