There was something so special about cooking with his parents, grandmother and siblings at the age of 10 that sparked Eugene Ramcharan’s love of cooking and cemented his path to the culinary world.
Now, 13 years later, the Phoenix lad is making his mark in kitchens across the world.
Ramcharan’s goal is to showcase the flavours of Durban to the world.
Last year, Ramcharan won the Distell Inter Hotel Challenge in the Best Chef category. His prize included a trip to Dubai where he got to work in world- famous hotels and restaurants under the mentorship and guidance of world-renowned chefs. In an interview at the Beverley Hills Hotel in uMhlanga, where he works, Ramcharan only realised he had won when his mentor got up to hug him.
Ramcharan attended Brailsford Primary School and matriculated from Solvista Secondary School. He then enrolled at the Capsicum Culinary Studio chef school.
“When I told I was selected for the annual competition, I was excited,” Ramcharan said.
He said it was a wonderful opportunity to grow as a chef and as a person.
“Before entering the competition I had assisted the previous winner, also from the Beverley Hills, so I was familiar with how to prepare myself. Despite all that, the nerves still got me. It was a big task as I needed to maintain the title,” he said.
Speaking of his Dubai trip, Ramcharan’s brown eyes light up as he recalls the places he interned at.
“I spent some time at the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai, which is the tallest hotel in the world, and at the Ritz-Carlton Dubai. I got to work at some of the food outlets but my favourite time was working at the Garden Restaurant. I just loved the Peruvian flavour infusions. I loved the fact that Peruvian cooking has drawn inspiration from Japan, Portugal, Arabic countries and Spain. It is very diverse,” he said.
He said he had learnt a lot from working in international kitchens and wanted to infuse that with his own style of cooking.
Ramcharan hopes to inspire youngsters from Phoenix and Durban to chase their dreams.
“We have a lot of potential and a lot to offer. We do not need a chef from overseas to show us. We are also talented.”
He is confident that the Beverley Hills Hotel will take home the trophy.
Article Source: Daily News