Day 2: Sept 2017
Day In Bretten
Host for Bretten was Blanco who manufacture some of the finest kitchen equipment, and we had a great opportunity to visit their factory. It was a short bus ride after breakfast. The starting of bus rides were only after mandatory self body count. For some unknown reason the count always started from back of the bus. Each chef shouts out his number of that day as per his seating and coach moves after the chefs got the right number. Another integral and crucial aspect of the tour was briefing in the beginning and closing of the ride by Chef Ramu Butler who as tour leader did some amazing job of it. He would share information about what the day beckons for us. End of the day the information was for the next day activities that included information about time of departure, dress code and other information for the next day. He also would sort out train travel tickets, seat number allocation, corrective action if required, making sure that mementos, flags etc were available readily. The list of tasks he undertook is endless and he did it for all the days with same cheerfulness and enthusiasm.
Chef Ramu Butler- Tour Leader – Briefing ,seen in this picture with Chef Jugesh Arora
I have to mention Chef Himanshu Sahoo here. His short motivational talk that was usually interspersed with some short stories was another highlight of the tour. The bus journeys were made more meaningful with Chef Himanshu’s talks. Whenever we had the time Chef Himanshu was there and the claps for him was well deserved.
Himanshu in one of the sessions in the Coach
Talking of claps, which were also there for the Chef who was delayed to enter the bus. These sets of claps made sure that all were in fact not just on time but well ahead of schedule. Due to this the bus usually left early and other times on time! That’s the use of claps in two different ways for you.
At the Blanco Factory in the show room we were amazed to see the product line. Chefs were happy to see some parts for Rolls Royce were being manufactured in the same premises that manufactured the kitchen equipment. After a company presentation by Blanco, Chef Soundararjan ,President Mentor of SICA presented about SICA. I was indeed happy to see my organization Le Meridien, Bangalore featured in Blanco presentation by Mr Jagdish Prasad as the first buyer of Blano Cook from India. Then it was time for action to cook alongside Chef Uwe Kammer in the Blanco Cook and Chefs Selvaraju and Gopal Jha sprung in to action along and dished out some succulent food. Lunch was served along. This was followed by small tour of the show room and the factory to understand the products.
Lunch at Blanco
The evening was at the Castle Ravensburg , and chefs could feel the chill weather of Germany. There were some nice sparkling welcome drinks and we were introduced to CEO of Blanco Mr. Roland Spleiss. The dinner was prepared and presented with Blanco cook so that the chefs could see the equipment in use in real life situation. After the sumptuous dinner it was some time for rendezvous in the castle and chefs had some fun out there.
Castle Ravensburg at Bretten
Another feature of our tour that needs to be highlighted is the way SICA honoured the dignitaries and important personalities. Chefs had thoughtfully carried thank you certificates, Ponnaadai and Thanjavur art plates with SICA logo. A bit about Ponnaadai made with silk-The traditional way of draping this rectangular colourful handmade silk cloth on the person is a well known way of honouring in Southern India. The Thanjavur plate another ancient traditional handmade metallic plate (with Geographical Indication with TRIPS https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thanjavur_Art_Plate) was handed over to the dignitaries. This was the way the art and culture of South India was highlighted throughout the tour.
Ponnadaai – Silk Handwoven Cloth
SICA Thanjavur Plate
Blanco CEO and the team being honoured