Food Connoisseurs India Convention 2023

10:00 AM - 10:05 AM

Welcome Address

10:05 AM - 10:20 AM

Inaugural Keynote:
From Tradition to Innovation - Navigating the Culinary Evolution in HoReCa

by Chef Hemant Oberoi, Founder, OB Hospitality and Hemant Oberoi Hospitality Goa; Founder, Michelin Selection Martabaan by Hemant Oberoi

10:20 AM - 11:10 AM

SESSION 1: What are we eating in 2023?

  • The Indian restaurant industry outlook
  • Increased demand for local and organic food
  • ‘Seasonal’ becomes regular on menu
  • Going environmentally conscious with focus on sustainability
  • Emergence of plant-based and vegan food options
  • Specialty & fusion, the way forward


  • Chef Saby, Chef, Mentor, President – Young Chefs Association of India (YCAI), Restaurateur & Entrepreneur


  • Chef Hemant Oberoi, Founder, OB Hospitality and Hemant Oberoi Hospitality Goa; Founder, Michelin Selection Martabaan by Hemant Oberoi
  • Rashmi Daga, Founder & CEO – FreshMenu
  • Senthil Kumar, Chief Business Officer, Dindigul Thalappakatti
  • Noufal Narikkoli, Founder & CEO, Zaitoon Restaurant & Grills
  • Shivnayan Aggarwal, Market Transformation Manager, Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO)

11:10 AM -11:20 AM

Keynote Address:
Sustainable Dining and the Restaurant Revolution: Crafting a Greener Tomorrow

by Chef Abhijit Saha, Founder & Managing Director, Ace Hospitality & Consulting

11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

SESSION 2: Ensuring stellar experience for your customers

  • Delighting customers with insta-worthy décor
  • Your vibe attracts your tribe – Making the most of music, lighting, technology, and other elements to create the right ‘vibe’
  • Service that revolves around the customer – Value of empathetic & pro-active staff
  • Turning your customers into restaurant brand ambassadors – Personalizing the guest experience


  • Pravesh Pandey, Director - Roxie, Handcrafted Restaurants Pvt. Ltd.; Ex-Director – Byg Brewski Brewing Company


  • Swarnalatha Ravi, Director, Namma Veedu Vasanta Bhavan
  • Shweta Ravi, Director, Nandhana Group of Restaurants
  • Mahesh Reddy, Chief Executive Officer, GOPIZZA
  • Nicolas Grossemy, Co-Founder, Paris Panini
  • Sona Mantri, Founder & CEO, Sprinteriors - B2B Designers Pvt. Ltd.

12:20 PM - 1:10 PM

SESSION 3: Building the new-age restaurant

  • Achieving It All: How Leading Brands harness People, Growth, and Technology
  • The key to growth and gaining a competitive advantage
  • Rebuilding teams for better-prioritizing initiatives and technology investment decisions to scale operations
  • Testing the waters to go global
  • The future of menu innovation – keeping it short and simple


  • Chef Vikas Seth, Chef & Culinary Director, Embassy Leisure


  • Kamal Deep Singh, Chief Executive Officer, Drunken Monkey
  • Biraja Rout, Founder, Biggies Burger
  • Dr. Abhinav Saxena, Mentor, Entrepreneur, Investor & Founder, Cloud Kitchen Network
  • Alina Alam, Founder & CEO, Mitti Cafe

1:10 PM - 2:00 PM

Networking Lunch

2:00 PM - 2:55 PM

SESSION 4: Food Tech accelerating food transformation

  • Digital transforming the dining experience
  • The Tech-Driven Evolution of Ghost Kitchens
  • Adoption of technology to enhance customer experience & streamline operations
  • Key technologies propelling the Food Tech industry
  • Robotics & automation enabling efficient food production
  • How much tech is too much for F&B business?



  • Kushang, Co-Founder & CEO, SupplyNote


  • Rajat Agrawal, Chief Executive Officer, Barista Coffee Company Limited
  • Sachin Pabreja, Co-Founder & CEO, EazyDiner
  • Manish Guptaa, Director, Digital Marketing & Technology, Pizza Hut India, Yum! Brands
  • Rajneesh Raman, Co-Founder & COO, Celcius Logistics Solutions
  • Sanandan Sudhir, Founder & CTO, On2Cook India
  • Rahul Tirumalapragada, Founder & CEO, Makers of Milkshakes

2:55 PM - 3:25 PM

Culinary Entrepreneurship: Navigating the Path to a Flourishing Dining Establishment

Fireside Chat with Zorawar Kalra, Founder & Managing Director, Massive Restaurants Pvt. Ltd.
Moderated by Raunak Kundu, Founder, Bangalore Foodies Club & Secret Sauce Behind a Successful Restaurant

3:25 PM - 4:15 PM

SESSION 5: Expansion of regional cuisine beyond their traditional boundaries

  • Restaurants and cafes bringing state-wise cuisine on platter
  • Fusion of regional cuisine with other cuisines
  • Increase in street food culture and rise of specialty cafes
  • Emphasis on traditional cooking techniques and authentic ingredients
  • Risks and rewards of going all out with specialty cuisine
  • Government's role in promoting regional cuisine


  • Chef Koushik S., Celebrity Chef, Consultant, MasterChef Tamil Judge & Founder, Eatitude


  • Dhiman Das, Executive Director, K.C. Das Private Limited
  • Chef Davinder Kumar, Executive Chef & Vice President, Le Meridien Hotel, New Delhi & President, Indian Culinary Forum
  • MasterChef Pankaj Bhadouria, TV Host, Author, TEDx Speaker, Entrepreneur, Educator
  • Raghavendra Rao, Co-Founder & CEO, The Rameshwaram Café
  • Vinod Kumar NV, CEO & Managing Director, SNN Foods

4:15 PM - 5:05 PM

SESSION 6: The era of Pub-Hopping & Nightlife

  • A lot can happen over a mug of beer - How Microbreweries have become an integral part of Dining-out Culture
  • New trends to watch out for - zero-waste drinks, unique garnishes, indigenous ingredients, and high-quality ice programs
  • Evolution of palates, flavors, and profiles – Avant-garde starters & cocktail mixes
  • Demand for Experience-led drinking - Community Managers brewing culture (Open mics, bartending shows, Drink & Chill, Bar games)
  • Choosing the right setting to narrate your story - Performance space-cum-bars, Beach-front restaurant bars, Open-kitchen, Open-bar, Gastro-pubs


  • Disha Oberoi, Radio Jockey, Superhits 93.5 RED FM


  • Teja Chekuri, Managing Partner, Ironhill India
  • Mukesh Tolani, Co-Founder & Director, Toit Beer Co., pH4 Food & Beverages Pvt. Ltd.
  • Abhay Kewadkar, Founder & Managing Director, Fox In The Field
  • Ajay Nagarajan, CEO - Total Environment Hospitality, Windmills, Brewery & Restaurant

5:05 PM - 6:00 PM

SESSION 7: Entering the world of Hospitality

  • The Business elements of owning a Restaurant
  • Mastering the Culinary Arts
  • Importance of SOPs – Housekeeping, Catering, Inventory, Health & Safety
  • Calculating and Analyzing the Profitability of a Dish
  • Going digital from the front-end to back-end operations – Catalyzing growth using Integrated Restaurant Management Systems & Tech


  • Dr. (Chef) K. Thiru, Principal, Welcomgroup Graduate School of Hotel Administration


  • Chef Chalapathi Rao, Cuisine Designer & Partner – Simply South, MasterChef India (Telugu) Judge, TEDx Speaker
  • Raymond Andrews, Co-Founder, Biryani Blues
  • Jatinder Pal, Executive Chef, Sheraton Grand Bengaluru Whitefield Hotel & Convention Center
  • Chef Anupam Gulati, Director – Culinary, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Bangalore
  • Sanchari Chowdhury (FiIHM), Campus Director - IIHM Bangalore & Head - South; Co-Chairperson, Hospitality, Tourism & Travel Expert Committee - Bangalore Chamber of Industry and Commerce (BCIC), Karnataka

6:30 PM - 7:30 PM


7:30 PM onwards