A feast of the senses at a big, fat Indian wedding

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

mumbai day 2 sign

mumbai day 3 awaiting bridemumbai day 3 arun and karanMumbdai day 3 AK on horsemumbai day 3 crowds and mrs kapur

They don’t come much bigger. Or much fatter. I’m talking weddings. Indian weddings. And I’m still trying to take in everything I have seen over the past three days.

Firstly some context. Mumbai-based Travel Food Services is not only India’s largest airport food & beverage operator but its Chairman Sunil Kapur is also one of the country’s most successful restuarateurs.

His food empire is a combination of own brands and franchises, including The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Spaghetti Kitchen, Gelato Italiano, Noodle Bar, Penne, Spoon and Bombay Blue, Copper Chimney, Blue Sea and Café by the Beach. More recently Travel Food Services entered into a joint venture with Gate Gourmet under the TFS-Gate brand name,  developing F&B onboard services for carriers as well as a high-class passenger lounge operation at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, which I will be testing out later today.

In airports, Travel Food Services runs a combination of proprietary, national and international F&B brands, including KFC, Domino’s Pizza, Cafe Coffee Day, Nirula’s, Cafeccino and Haagen Dazs.

mumbai day 3 venue panorama

Mumbai day 3 panorama late

mumbai day 3 lights at night

[The grounds of the Royal Western India Turf Club were turned into a magnificently lit garden-like setting]

With all that foodie heritage it’s little surprise that the wedding of Sunil’s younger son Karan over the past few days to the beautiful Vidhi has been a feast of the senses – wonderful food, of course, reflecting the magnificent diversity, flavours and wonder of Indian cuisine but also the senses of smell, of colour, of joy, of friendship, of love.

I was fortunate enough to have been invited to this extraordinary occasion, played out to guests over three enthralling days (including the Sangeet and Mehendi pre-wedding ritual evenings), hosted with a warmth that would make the fieriest Indian curry seem tepid. It will live long in my memory, like the ever-lingering taste of a chicken bharta from Sunil Kapur’s Copper Chimney restaurant. The pictures below capture just some of the spirit of an unforgettable, very big, very fat Indian wedding.

mumbai day 3 band

mumbai day 3 bride and groom (2)

mumbai day 3 bride and groom

mumbai day 3 bride

Mumbai day 3 flowers

Mumbai day 3 panorama late1

Mumbai day 3 mm with ak, gf and dag

[Karan Kapur’s older brother Varun, Martin Moodie, Grant Fleming of LS travel retail ASPAC and Lagardère Services Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dag Rasmussen] 

mumbai day 3 kapur men

[Father and sons: Varun, Karan and Sunil Kapur]

mm arun and karan

[Varun Kapur, Karan Kapur and Martin Moodie]

Mumbai wedding day stage better

mumbai day 3 show 2

mumbai day 3 show 4

mumbai day 3 show 5

mumbai day 3 show

mumbai day 3 turban first

[So much scalp, so little cloth… Martin Moodie tests the art (and stock levels) of a Mumbai turban master]

Mumbai day 3 turban mm

mumbai day 2 nice

[The Mehendi dinner on the eve of the wedding saw a thrillingly diverse array of Mumbai street food served]

mumbai day 2 chef

Mumbai day 2 bus

mumbai day 2 coffee vendor

Mumbai day 2 colours

mumbai day 2 dk and ak

[David and Ann King]

Mumbai day 2 lanterns

Mumbai day 2 umbrellas

Mumbai day 2

martin and neelu

[Neelu Kapur, mother of the groom, and Martin Moodie]

martin and sunil

[Sunil Kapur and Martin Moodie]

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