Chef Damu is the first recipient of the prestigious award instituted by World Tamil Organisation, U.K.
Chef K. Damodaran, affectionately known as Chef Damu, is characteristically warm and chatty, despite being in a London taxi en route to the airport. On his way home to Chennai, undeterred by airport lounges and transfers, the popular TV show host and cook book author, enthusiastically chats on the phone about his latest triumph: The Culinary Legend Lifetime Achievement Award at the Global Food, Hospitality and Tourism Achievements Award 2021.
It is this unflagging enthusiasm that has kept him focused and driven for the past 40 years in an extraordinary career, which was celebrated at a recent event organized at the House of Commons, British Parliament, Westminster, on November 5.
Chef Damu says it all began when he received a telephone call, a month ago, from the World Tamil Organization UK, requesting details on his career. (A registered charity organisation, the WTO was established in 2005 with the aim of promoting the welfare of the Tamil community, with a focus on arts and culture in the United Kingdom.)
Guinness World Records
- Longest cooking marathon (Individual), 2010, Chennai, India.
- Longest Dosa in the world, 2012, Madurai, India.
- Largest Curry in the world, 2014, Little India, Singapore
Currently the President of South Indian Chef Association, Chef Damu is member of the World Association of Cooks Society. He says he has judged over 10,000 cooking competitions, including the popular ‘Cook with Comali’ Show which aired on Star Vijay. The Chef has also authored 29 cookery books.
Two weeks after that call, the organizers invited Chef Damu to fly to London, stating that he had been selected for a Lifetime Achievement Award. “I feel greatly honoured to be selected by the WTO for this prestigious award,” he says, adding that the Global Food, Hospitality and Tourism Achievements Award was instituted this year. He adds, “I am the first person to be selected for this award, so I am doubly happy.”
The award committee recognized Chef Damu’s earlier achievements, awards and cook books. “I feel so elated that I got the chance to meet the who’s who of the hospitality industry from across the world,” he says, adding that over 40 internationally renowned chefs and restaurateurs were invited to the event, where a short video on Chef Damu was screened.
He adds with a chuckle that he also enjoyed the dinner that was served at the ceremony. “There was a Lobster Bisque, as well as roast chicken served with mashed potatoes.”