In love with the flavours

In love with the flavours

It isn’t just the cosmopolitan nature of Bengaluru that has impressed young Nicolas Coupe but the other interesting facets as well. Nicolas, who hails from Arras in France, works with the French food truck, ‘Le Casse Croute’ and his cultural and culinary journey here has been an eventful one.

Hailing from the north of France, he says that his hometown is as small as Indiranagar, where he stays. “People from Arras are always welcoming. Compared to other parts of France, they are more open to outsiders. Arras is also known for a special dish — a type of sausage called ‘Andouillette’. There is even a special food festival back in my hometown, which features such kinds of food,” he informs.

“It is an amazing experience to be here. I have never lived in such a big city. I did my higher studies in French Law in Douai, which is also in the northern part of France, but bigger than his hometown. I’ve always moved from small spaces to big ones throughout my life,” he says.
Nicolas, who has been in many arenas before he decided to step into the food industry, was always connected to food.

“I’m like a Swiss knife. After law, I worked as an industrial engineer and a dye-maker. It’s after this that I decided to move to Bengaluru and get into the food industry,” he adds.
Though Nicolas’ family is settled in Arras, he has many Indian and French friends here. A true foodie, Nicolas says that he learnt cooking from his family members. “I picked up the nuances of cooking from my mother and sister.”

He was excited to join Nicolas Grossemy, co-founder of the food truck, who is also from his hometown. “I learnt that Indians aren’t much aware about authentic French food. Moreover, our toasted sandwiches aren’t a popular concept here. I was excited to be a part of such a project and meet new people.”

Nicolas says that apart from a particular French cafe chain, there are not many authentic French food places here. “The food is authentic and reminds me of home. The croissants are perfect! But it is expensive.” He adds that the City has many European and continental cuisine-themed restaurants. “There are many which are also multi-cuisine places. Even back home, we are used to different foods; everything is not authentic French.”

Of the many things he has learnt in Bengaluru, Nicolas has learnt to drive in hectic traffic.
“I’ve never driven in big cities and it can be a bit challenging to drive the matador around.” He also tried to adapt to the culture. “I’ve adapted to Indian food and the culture here. After the initial few months, I used to binge into Indian food. I love the ‘chicken tikka’, ‘malai kofta’ and almost all kind of gravies.”

When the young chef has some time to spare, he hangs out at restaurants and pubs in Indiranagar and Koramangala.

“In Indiranagar, I go to ‘The Black Rabbit’ and ‘Toit’, which has great beer. Since I’m from the north of France, which is close to Belgium, we are known to indulge in good quality beer. I also love ‘Vapour Pub & Brewery’. In Koramangala, I love hanging out at ‘The Local’.” He is glad he is staying in Indiranagar as it is brimming with eateries and food spaces.

Apart from the food haunts, Nicolas loves the people here and their religious sentiments. “People here are very passionate about religion. Every day is a special festival for someone.”
Indian music has also left an impression on him. “When we are working in the kitchen, we play music and sometimes there will be regional or Bollywood music playing. I do not understand the lyrics at all and the beats are also varied. All kinds of instruments are played in Bollywood music, which is baffling.”

For Nicolas, life here has been an easy one though he is an outsider. “It’s very easy to go out into the streets and meet new people. People here are always ready to talk and it’s very easy to communicate here. Most people here speak good English, which makes it easier.”

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