The Team

The team at Chaiwala is peerless, having held positions in kitchens, bars and hospitality all over the world for many years. The team comes together at Chaiwala to bring guests the ultimate dining experience. Expect great food, great drinks and exceptional service.

Prabir Banerjee

Executive Chef

Chef Prabir Banerjee was born and raised in India with a passion for food instilled in him following years of exploring new flavours and ingredients. With more than 18 years of experience in the culinary arts, Chef Prabir is a veteran chef with a unique perspective on food.

Through experience gained at celebrated establishments in Bangalore and formal training from the Vidyasagar Institute of Hotel Management in West Bengal, Chef Prabir has spent immense effort and time honing his craft. He possesses top-notch skills in managing talented teams, sourcing top-quality produce and ensuring smooth operations within the kitchen. With a flair for experimentation and innovation, Chef Prabir never fails to impress with delectable dishes plated beautifully. Specializing in Indian cuisine, Chef Prabir has also had a hand in crafting menus showcasing dishes from various global cuisine types. As a part of the Pirata Group team, Chef Prabir injects a creative ingenuity into the dishes at Chaiwala, a modern Indian restaurant located in the heart of Central.

Balaji Balachander

Culinary Director

Chef Balaji Balachander, known to his friends and colleagues as Bala, is a long-time friend of Pirata Group co-founder Manuel Palacio. He is offering a helping hand to Pirata Group by supervising the quality of food from across India.

Chef Bala is known internationally for his experience at Michelin-starred Benares, London. He has since returned home to Chennai where he opened his own restaurant SALT in 2015, much to the delight of his friends and family. Now with three locations in Chennai and Bangalore, SALT’s “Indian soul food” has become a favourite amongst locals and visitors alike.

Bala’s culinary journey started at a young age in his mother’s kitchen, and after catering college in Chennai he was appointed to his first position at the Taj Coromandel, where he was promoted to running the kitchen at their award-winning restaurant Southern Spice.

Abdellah Farroug

General Manager

Abdellah Farroug is a highly effective and passionate General Manager with over 20 years of experience in the food and beverage industry. With expertise in generating sales revenue, food and beverage management, staff development, and maintaining exceptional customer satisfaction, Abdellah has a proven track record of overseeing the successful launch of restaurants.

From his role as the Operation Manager at Le Comptoir Group, where he optimized operations and exceeded guest expectations, to his time as the General Manager of renowned establishments like Il Bel Paese and Lavilla Group, Abdellah has consistently elevated colleague and guest satisfaction while driving financial performance.

Abdellah holds a degree in Marketing, Hospitality, and Management from ECG School in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, along with a Catering Middle School education from Lycee d’Arche in Longwy, France.

With Abdellah at the helm, Chaiwala thrives as a haven of culinary delight, where every guest is treated to warm hospitality and a truly uplifting dining experience.


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