The Thai Chef In Oberoi, India- Naphaphak Prompaksa
BV: How does it feel when you serve your traditional cuisines to the customers from different parts of the world?
Chef: One of the main reasons for me to have chosen to become a professional chef is to become a culinary ambassador of my country. I feel honored, proud and excited to bring the authentic flavors and delicate nuances of my country’s cuisine to a global audience. I could not have asked for a more fulfilling career.
BV: Do you cook only Thai cuisine? If yes, do you give your own twist or you love to serve in its most authentic way?
Chef: I only cook Thai cuisine. Apart from my adherence to authentic recipes that have been taught to me by senior Thai Chefs at my culinary school and my early days being an apprentice and junior chef, I also bring in my home influence to my food. I hail from the North Eastern province of Isaan. We have our own distinct flavorings to Thai food which has influence from neighboring Laos and Myanmar. Regional influences in Thai cuisine are prevalent and add variety to the country’s cuisine.
BV: Share your experiences working with one of the most prestigious chains of Hotels, The Oberoi.
Chef: This is the fourth year with The Oberoi, Bengaluru. Not only is it a beautiful hotel, but, my restaurant is its crowning glory. It has a perfectly natural, alfresco setting which reminds me of Thai pagodas which dot Thailand’s parks and gardens. The team I work with are my family. They not only help me with my work but provide me all kinds of support so that I miss home a lot less! The guests too come from across the city, India and the world. It is a delight to speak to them, hear their stories on Thai food and even get ideas to try new dishes. I could not have been happier.
BV: What are your thoughts on the future of food and gastronomy?
Chef: I cannot comment much on this as my food and mantra is all about simplicity and fresh flavors. Our food in Thailand is a testimony to great food being uncomplicated. The only thing to remember is to keep it fresh, high quality and close to your roots. We put a lot of stress on knowing the foundations well and never to compromise on ingredients. This approach to food can never fail. This kind of food is soul food, which you keep coming back to.
BV: Would you like to share your accolades and recognition in this culinary world?
Chef: In the last 4 years itself, Rim Naam has won top honours from many prestigious platforms for being the best in Thai cuisine, with encores each year – The Times Food and Nightlife Guide, Food Lovers, Eazy Diner, Zomato and many other culinary recognition platforms. It feels fabulous to lead such a well-loved and acclaimed restaurant.
BV: Any message for the young talented chefs worldwide?
Chef: Choose this profession only if you love food and serving food to people from the bottom of your heart. You need to be patient; observant, very hard working and most of all find joy in a hectic day.
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