Chef Chintan Pandya of Rahi restaurant in New York City trained at Oberoi Centre of Learning and Development in New Delhi and was named a Rising Star Chef by StarChefs. He was also a James Beard semifinalist. “I cook things that I have grown up eating and love to eat myself,” says the Mumbai-born chef. Pandya will showcase his culinary talents at Dan’s Rosé Soirée, the official kickoff to the Hamptons summer season, on Sunday, May 26 at the Southampton Arts Center.
What talent would you most like to have?
That I could work for 24 hours straight.
What’s your comfort food and why?
Khichdi. It’s a porridge-like dish made with rice and lentils.
What is the most memorable thing you’ve ever tasted?
BBQ stingray in Singapore.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
That I have been able to work and perform in New York City.
What’s a unique kitchen ritual you practice?
I always pray and bow down—it’s a mark of respect towards God in Hindu culture—every day when I walk in.
If you were not in the food or wine business, what would you be doing?
What has surprised you most about working in the East End culinary scene?
I think the acceptability of people for ethnic cuisine.
What is your go to karaoke song?
I am a very bad singer!
It’s your last weekend on earth—what’s the menu?
Simple home cooked meal, every day.
We just handed you a glass of bubbly. Now please make a toast to summer on the East End.
You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.