Home Articles IN CONVERSATION WITH…DAVIN NARULA, YAKUN KAYA TOAST

IN CONVERSATION WITH…DAVIN NARULA, YAKUN KAYA TOAST

BEST NEWCOMER- RESTAURANT
MYANMORE AWARDS 2014

TELL ME ABOUT YOU
I was born in Singapore but I’ve only lived there for about 10 years of my life. I’ve lived in Dubai and London for most of my life. London was for schooling. Dubai was working for a telecom business, the same one setting up in Myanmar. That’s what we came here to do. In the midst of that we decided to get into the F&B business. I’ve been put in charge of that. I’ve been here for a year now since we got Yakun on board.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN YAKUN KAYA TOAST AND YAKUN FAMILY CAFES
Yakun Kaya Toast offers the toast products, coffee and snacks. The Family Café was introduced early last year in Singapore where we introduced the full fledge menu with meals. When we entered here we said the first shop that we do has got to be got to be the flagship – a big one, a good one and with full meals. So the people who know Yakun will enjoy the experience and those who don’t will understand the full experience.

WHAT ARE YOUR STRENGTHS
Implementing is the biggest challenge for a lot of people. They have ideas but not many want to get their hands dirty. Going in and getting something started in the grass root level. Implementing- that’s what I do. Somebody has to go to the streets, find the products, negotiate, talk to the owners, talk to the kitchen staff. I make things happen.

IS THERE A NAME FOR WHAT YOU DO
I’m the Head of Operations.

WHAT DO YOU DO DURING YOUR DOWNTIME
I travelled a lot but now I realized I’ve been here for a year but I’ve never been to anywhere else besides Yangon so recently I went to Ngwe Saung. Beautiful, relaxing and very nice. I’ve been to Mandalay. There’s a big Chinese population there. I would love to see this beautiful country- Inle Lake and Ngapali. Apparently there’s a beautiful winery in Shan state. I would love to do more but the infrastructure here is not easy to do sports. It’s very difficult to find the right people, the right place and the right time. Sometimes I work ‘til seven, sometimes ‘til nine. Tomorrow I may just find out that I need to be in Singapore so I have to fly immediately.

IF YOU CAN INVITE ANYONE, DEAD OR ALIVE, TO YAKUN WHO WOULD IT BE
It would be the founder himself, Mr Ah Koon. He’s the guy who started Yakun in 1944 in a small shop in Singapore. It’d be really nice to have him here and see what we have achieved and created in Myanmar. I would serve him his traditional coffee and see if it’s as good as it used to be.

WHAT DO YOU THINK HE WILL SAY
I don’t speak Chinese but I’m guessing it will be in Chinese. Laughs. I guess he will be happy with what he sees.

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