Samyukta Nair speaks to CF’s Sheena Bhattessa for the latest instalment of 12 Journeys With….
Closing out our third season is food entrepreneur and founder of LSL Capital, Samyukta Nair. Here’s a taste of what to expect from our final episode…
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THIS WEEK’S EPISODE
In BONUS Episode Thirteen, Season Three, Samyukta Nair joins Sheena Bhattessa to discuss her career to date.
Entrepreneur Samyukta Nair is the inspiring woman behind some of our favourite London restaurants – including Jamavar, Bombay Bustle, and MiMi Mei Fair. Here, Nair shares her journey into the field of food – her family founded The Leela Palaces, Hotels & Resorts in India, so hospitality has long been in her DNA –, discussing why concept restaurants have lasting appeal and divulging some of her favourite dishes; plus, later in this episode, Nair share details of a new project she has in the pipeline!
Growing up in Mumbai (“if you grew up there, you call it Bombay”), Nair imbibed a great deal of knowledge about hospitality by gathering with family and friends around a table.
Her affection for the industry is made clear when she speaks on the appeal of concept restaurants and their storytelling potential – the transportive MiMi Mei Fair and the beguiling Jamavar are just two examples of Nair’s whimsical approach to dining. Cultural journeys are at the heart of what Nair does – “food is the most important vehicle of culture we have today”.
As a child, Nair made trips to London, once or twice a year – the city was a stopover en route to New York (her grandfather worked in the garment business prior to his foray into hospitality, and so made regular business trips to the states). Having visited London (and more specifically, Mayfair) many times, it wasn’t until 2000 that Nair felt the culinary scene really started to take pace. Nair asserts that this was marked by the “onset of Zuma” – “clean, and modern, and really sexy”. “Scott’s and all the other places that mushroomed afterwards…”. Later in this episode, Nair further details of her upcoming project, Socca – Mayfair’s latest addition, which opens this summer.