He loves to sing and dance, shop for Indian attires for his family but can't do without his signature Philipino cuisine

Juancho Miday, spent a couple of years in Chennai. And was not sure how happy he would be once he shifts to another state in the south of India. After having spent fun years stirring and steaming the yummiest of dishes for the varied food connoisseurs in Dubai, Singapore and Malaysia, Juancho a native of Philippines, expected something similar when he landed in Chennai. But he was in for a rude shock, “Chennai was very traditional. The customers are choosy eaters. They interact less with us and that made me feel as if I am an outsider,” says Juancho.

When he landed in Hyderabad as the Master Chef at Syn in Taj Deccan, Juancho didn't expect too much from the city. “I was carrying the Chennai memories. But as my job demanded I made the shift,” he recollects.

But Hyderabad was a pleasant surprise. “Right from the Executive Chef to the staff at the hotel and the customers, they are all very friendly. Customers in Hyderabad know the concept of interactive cooking and they do not mind sitting near the live kitchen and instructing while I rustle up things,” he smiles.

Juancho Miday, has extensive experience at some of the top hotels and restaurants in the UAE and Philippines. But Juancho says he is yet to discover the city. His knowledge of the city is restricted to City Center Mall and GVK One. “It is at a safe walk-able distance,” he laughs.

Born and raised in Philippines, Juancho is trained under master Sushi chefs. Since then, his career has taken him to hotels and restaurants all over the world. His experience include Beninhana, Japanese Restaurant, Al Bustan Rotana Hotel Dubai, UAE and lots more and this is where he learned at the hands of the master the secrets of Sushi and Tepan cooking.

However, when not cooking and hanging out in one of these malls, Juancho would be caught chatting with wife in Dubai over phone or watching movies. “Language is not a problem for me, I can watch any language movie. The faces of the people must appeal to me and I am sure to end it. I have watched Tamil movies when in Chennai and the action sequences are very inspiring,” he laughs.

Juancho will never be caught shopping in Hyderabad, “my brands are not available here,” he complains. But the chef says “I love collecting Indian attires for my daughter and son. My wife too has a good collection of Indian clothes which I bought from Chennai.” Juancho is crazy about Hyderabadi biriyani and mutton rogan josh. What about learning to cook the dish? “No fun knowing to cook all the dishes. I would love to eat them from the ones who cooks them best,” he says.

A good dancer and singer, Juancho misses his wife around when he listens to good music. What about admiring the women in Hyderabad? “I am a dedicated father and husband. I only look at women in western clothes, so that I can assist my wife and daughter when they shop,” he laughs.

PRABALIKA M. BORAH

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