Lions And Tigers And Chefs, Oh My!
Plenty of cooks do their time in large institutional kitchens, everything from hotels and convention centres to hospitals and old folks residences. Many make a career out of it.
Very few get to hang with hippos or lemurs when they step out of the kitchen for a break. That’s exactly what Krish Nair, executive sous chef at Calgary Zoo and the winner of last weekend’s (May 7) Chopped Canada episode, gets to do. Chef Nair beat out three other competitors for the $10K win. Celeb chefs Michael Smith, Eden Grinshpan and Massimo Capra judged the event.
Chef Nair’s culinary career began in India, took him to The Savoy in London, then The Fairmont Banff Springs hotel, before eventually landing the zoo gig.
In addition to a bevvy of exotic animals, Chef Nair says one of the best things about the job is harvesting fresh produce from the zoo’s private herb and vegetable gardens.
The Calgary Zoo, which almost got washed away during the epic flood the city experienced in 2013, does a bang up event business (weddings, corporate parties, etc.), in addition to feeding the hungry hoards of visitors who flow through each day.