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Pawan, Arjun & Nakul Mahendro

BADMAASH indian gastropub

Pawan, Nakul and Arjun Mahendro

Inspired to create an unrivaled “badass” dining experience, patriarch Pawan Mahendro and his sons, Nakul and Arjun, opened Badmaash in Spring of 2013 in Downtown Los Angeles. The modern colorful space soon became a go-to destination with a menu that offers traditional Indian dishes, alongside modern Indian fare. A popular house specialty, their Chicken Tikka Poutine, honors both their Indian and Canadian cultures. 

Chef Pawan was born and raised in the holy city of Amritsar, Punjab, India, home of the Golden Temple and a true food city in every sense, and ultimately pursued a path in international culinary cuisine. Upon graduating at the top of his class, Pawan secured a position at the Taj Mahal Intercontinental Hotel, where he honed his skills in Indian, French and Chinese cooking. Seeking to expand his knowledge of the industry, he then moved on to the Hotel Centaur (Mumbai). It wasn’t long before Pawan felt the urge to break free and embark on an independent venture in executive catering and event planning for corporate meetings and functions.

Following a move to Toronto, Pawan familiarized himself with the dining scene by working at West Side Grill, Dunkleman’s Fine Dining and Daily Planet as the Corporate Chef. But his entrepreneurial spirit kicked in once again and inspired him to open Jaipur Grill, an Indian eatery with European finesse, in 2002, with the help of his son Nakul who became the General Manager at the age of 21. It quickly became Toronto’s premier Indian dining destination.

Nakul & Arjun Mahendro grew up in Toronto, Canada. In their formative years, Nakul & Arjun were constantly coached by their father to pour wine ‘label-out’, serve from the left, and flip the perfect omelette. It was only natural that when Nakul turned 14, he took his first job as a bussboy, and a few years later, Arjun followed his older brother into the world of restaurant work. 

Nakul received his formal education at the Ted Rogers School of Hospitality & Tourism Management at Ryerson University. In his last year of school, and while working with Oliver & Bonacini Restaurants, Nakul was awarded Ontario Hostelry Institutes Top 30 Under 30 in 2010. Arjun attended Wilfred Laurier School of Business as well as George Brown College for Marketing Management.

Together, the 3 Mahendro men hope they can use the success & attention BADMAASH has brought them to change the way people think about Indian food & Indian people in America. They aim to break the negative stereotypes, and be business leaders that the Indian community can be proud of.

More about Pawan, Arjun & Nakul Mahendro

What is your ultimate comfort food?eggs and toast.If you weren't a chef, what would you be?aeronautical engineer.What three things are always in your pantry?kosher salt, cumin, and red onions.If you could cook with anyone in the world, who would it be?I love cooking with other people who are skilled and passionate. If I have to name a few; Thomas Keller, Wolfgang Puck, Martha Stewart. I'm really excited to cook with Chef Niven Patel of Ghee at the 2018 SOBEWFF!