My Restaurant In India is a brand new food travel series that follows Sarah Todd as she abandons her fashionable Melbourne lifestyle and heads to Goa to face the daunting challenge of setting up and running a 400-seat beach club and restaurant.
In an industry where only one out of three new restaurants survives, she questions if this is just a flight of fancy. Perched on the cliffs above one of the most exclusive stretches of beach in Goa, expectations on this young and passionate restaurant rookie are sky high. With very little industry experience, Sarah has everything to learn about running a restaurant. Armed only with her wits, a burning passion for great food and a deep love of India, the cameras follow Sarah as she strives to turn her restaurant dreams into reality, against the backdrop of a foreign land where she will need to find her feet fast.
There is a long list of things that need to be done and upon arrival Sarah soon discovers that things in India are done a bit differently. With the builders trying to finish construction only weeks before the official restaurant opening, Sarah needs to oversee the interior design and furnishing of the restaurant, set up the kitchen, devise a menu, source produce and find and train chefs and staff. She will also have to juggle her duties as a young mother with her mischievous five-year old son, Phoenix, tagging along for this life-changing journey.
“I'm really thrilled about finding a home at SBS food and to be amongst such impeccable food company. It's going to be great fun to share my adventures of setting up my very first restaurant in a foreign country with the SBS audiences. Join me for a crazy journey filled with laughter, tears, drama and excitement.” – Sarah Todd
At the young age of 18, Sarah was discovered as a model. She moved to Sydney under contract and then spent most of her career travelling the world and working for high-end fashion labels such as Gucci, Hugo Boss, Pantene and Seafolly. A decade was dedicated to modeling on runways and shooting photo spreads for a myriad of editorial and advertising campaigns in London, New York, Germany, Australia and New Zealand. It was along the way Sarah discovered a love for food culture she had never known. Exposure to so many different and exciting cuisines sparked her imagination and she began to feel heady with possibility.
Sarah’s now classically trained in French cookery from Le Cordon Bleu and has gained experience alongside Michelin star chef’s Neil Borthwick and Angela Hartnett at Merchant’s Tavern in London, hatted restaurants Tonka and St. Crispin in Melbourne and was pinned as the favourite to win on MasterChef Australia season six. Earlier this year Sarah published her first cookbook with worldwide publishing house Penguin, The Healthy Model Cookbook, with a focus on fresh seasonal produce cooked simply and packed with fantastic ways to inject flavour into dishes.
This six part series reveals a rollercoaster of triumphant highs and disastrous lows as Sarah embarks on the crucial stages of the restaurant development, through the chaos of opening night and beyond as she sets about creating the ultimate Goan beach dining experience.
My Restaurant In India premieres Thursday 20 October at 9pm on SBS as part of SBS Celebrates Diwali that will feature a range of content across the network:
Wild Sri Lanka – begins Friday 28 October, 7:30pm
The plains of Sri Lanka offer a wildlife spectacle to rival Africa's Serengeti. The landscape may seem timeless, but everything is in a state of constant change. Life on the plains is dominated by Sri Lanka's extraordinary climate. Situated at the point where two tropical oceans meet, it is deluged by two separate monsoons each year. It's a climate that every living thing must adapt to, by changing, by migrating – and sometimes by forming the most unlikely alliances with each other, and also with man.
Treasures of Ancient India – begins Saturday 29 October, 7:30pm
The story of the Indian sub-continent told through the treasures that have shaped the modern Indian world. Host Sona Datta takes a journey of thousands of miles deep into the Indian subcontinent to discover some of its most hidden treasures and reveal secrets from its ancient past. Sona travels back 5000 years to the ancient civilisation that first grew up on the shores of the Indus; revealing the lost Buddhist culture of northern Pakistan, and luxuriating in the extraordinary architectural flowering of the Mughal Empire and the fabulous temples of South India.
India: Nature’s Wonderland – begins Wednesday 2 November, 7:30pm
India - land of stunning wildlife, ancient cultures and extreme landscapes. Wildlife expert Liz Bonnin, actor Freida Pinto and mountaineer Jon Gupta reveal India's natural wonders.
World’s Busiest Railway – begins Wednesday 16 November, 7:30pm
World’s Busiest Railway goes behind the scenes of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus super-sized transport operation to reveal how the station’s staff and technological systems cope as they are stretched to breaking point on a daily basis. It’s a revealing journey into the everyday workings of an extraordinary station that is a microcosm of India – congested, vibrant, hot, colourful, and dangerous – organised chaos supported by a backbone of bureaucracy. With access to control rooms and signal boxes, driver’s cabs and engineering workshops, as well as the policemen, porters and dabba wallas who direct, help and feed travellers, this series tells the story of the megacity of Mumbai – its station and its transport challenges - over four hours.
Kolkata: City of Joy – Tuesday 22 November, 8:30pm
Sue Perkins immerses herself in the complex life of Kolkata. She sees first-hand how it has evolved from a place notorious for its fabled 'Black Hole' dungeon and the dreadful poverty of its street people to a place reinventing itself as a vibrant new megacity, with a booming property sector and a reputation for eccentricity, culture and tolerance. In this intricate human habitat, Sue explores the lives of its people, from the 250,000 homeless street kids hustling for a living to the wealthy young entrepreneurs who race their Ferraris and Lamborghinis down the streets of the New Town.