Chennai residents routinely head to any outlet of the popular Namma Veedu
Vasanta Bhavan eateries to have
their fill of piping hot Dosas and
Imagine their surprise one day
last week to find a famous chef
rustling up South Indian favorites
in the kitchens of the Vadapalani
branch of the chain.
Yup, Chef Vikas Khanna, in a
black tee and jeans, was in those
kitchens last week, stirring up healthful versions of the
Beetroot Appams. Payasam with oats. Pesarattu with
jowar flour, pearl millet, bajra, rice, dal and oats.
Pesarattu was the hardest to crack, he said, and was proud
to have created a version that offered no change in its
lovely, delicate taste.
What many Chennai-ites, dining there that day, may not
have noticed was who Khanna was cooking for!? Tucking
into his high-on-calcium-and-fiber-versions of restaurant
bests was a tall lady, as always elegant in pearls and a
beautifully-draped blue sari, who declared at the end of
the meal, after eating his Oats Payasam that it reminded
her of the sweet desserts she had at temples as a child.
Yes, none other than Indra Nooyi, chief executive, PepsiCo
What were Khanna and Nooyi doing hobnobbing
Khanna is a nutrition ambassador for PepsiCo’s Quaker
The Pepsi head honcho,
and winner of the India
The celeb chef is a great fan of South Indian food and
how it is made after a trip to South India in 1991: ‘People
are ritualistic about cooking. I like how they roast and
grind their coffee, make the Dosa batter from scratch…
they don’t resort to shortcuts.” He took to Twitter to say:
Amazing discussion with @IndraNooyi on how she’s driv-
Kanye West tweeted a pic of freaky tee. It’s been re-tweeted 68,000 times and liked by 180,000.
On the front it displays two albums merged
together – Kanye’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted
Fantasy and Taylor Swift’s 1989.
At the back it says Unity Is Immunity to
That’s symbolism for the long-running feud
between the singers that began on that long ago
day in 2009 when Kanye grabbed the mic as Taylor
was accepting her Grammy in New York City.
At the latest VMAs, in his speech, Kanye couldn’t
help bringing up the Kan-Tay row, saying in refer-
ence to his calling up Taylor, ‘People come up to me
like, “Yeah that’s right! Tell Taylor...” Bro, I love all
y’all. That’s why I called her.’
There’s an India connection.
The shirt was created by Yeezy fan, Humble the
Poet, a Toronto-based Sikh rapper whose real name
is Kanwer Singh. The dumala-sporting Punjabi
artist was invited to the VMAs and heard he might
make the red carpet. Some funky gear was in order,
hence the T-shirt.
As luck would have it Kanye breezed by when
Humble was talking to singer John Legend’s manager and stopped in his tracks when he saw the
image. He told Humble: ‘That’s a really cool shirt.
The rest is history. Singh instagrammed: ‘Just trying to bring some good energy to the event.. Glad it
was recognized and appreciated.’
It was just another day for New York cabbie Ajit Singh Bharth.
Bharth, 62, had dropped
off a passenger Midtown
and driven off. Two blocks
later a huffing-puffing
wannabe passenger came
charging up to him at the
red light on 55th.
Turned out he wanted
more than a ride! He wanted Bharth to walk the ramp at
the New York Fashion Week the
When Bharth dropped his passenger Midtown he had been
noticed by Quinton Clemm of
Eidos men’s fashion house.
Clemm told The Wall Street
Journal that he was quite taken
by the look of the Sikh cabbie —
‘older gentleman’ with ‘gold-
rimmed, aviator-style bifocals, a
tan spread-collar shirt, with an
awesome, full, white beard.’
Convincing the cabbie to hit
the ramp was considerably hard-
er for Clemm than running two
blocks to catch up with Bharth.
Bharth’s participation was crucial to the Eidos presentation
because this season it was all
about India’s gorgeous textiles.
Its designer Antonio Ciongoli
— who believes ‘style is the
intersection between self-aware-ness, comfort and utility’ — had
chosen to have India influence
the collection’s allure and felt it
would be appropriate to have
Indians showcase it.
After a day strutting the cat-
walk, Bharth was back behind
the wheel by late afternoon.
Didn’t Coco Chanel once say:
Simplicity is the keynote of all
More Sikh chic Yeezy likes Sikh style
Khanna feeds Nooyi
September 23, 2016