Kainaz Messman-Harchandrai is a pastry chef, and the Creative Director and co-owner of Theobroma which means Food of the Gods ’in Latin.
After college, Kainaz obtained a diploma from the Institute of Hotel Management, Mumbai and graduated from the Oberoi Centre of Learning and Development, Delhi in 2003. She studied advanced pastry at Ecole Nationale Supérieure de la Pâtisserie in Yssingeaux, France. The menu at Theobroma has been greatly influenced by Kainaz’s training and travels in Europe.
In 2004, aged 24, Kainaz started a small patisserie and bakery outside Cusrow Baug, a Parsi colony in Mumbai. It was a little café with four small tables and a few chairs. Her vision was to bring products that were until then largely available only in 5-star hotels, onto the high street and accessible by all. Kainaz wanted to make classic products, use good ingredients, and make things well.
Theobroma was an instant success, but Kainaz has had a long and difficult journey, building and growing the business one outlet at a time. Kainaz has devoted her years to training staff and maintaining product quality, and this is the reason for her success. Theobroma products are honestly priced; Kainaz did not want Theobroma to be exclusive and serve a niche customer base, yet her commitment to quality did not permit her to chase the lowest price. All products are made in Theobroma kitchens, by Theobroma staff and under Kainaz’s supervision. Theobroma offers brownies, cakes, desserts, chocolates, cupcakes, breads, and sandwiches.
Theobroma presently has 100 outlets across India. Theobroma is PE funded and the money has been used entirely on kitchens and outlets. Theobroma has evolved from a mom-&-pop shop into a professionally-run corporate. Theobroma aims to double its footprint over the next 3 to 4 years. All outlets are run and managed by the company, and Theobroma does not franchise.
Kainaz has written a book which details her journey, her mistakes and learnings, the challenges she has faced and overcome, the highs and lows of creating a brand and business. Baking a Dream: The Theobroma Story was published by HarperCollins in 2020 (https://www.amazon.in/dp/9353573580).
Kainaz has received many awards, has been widely interviewed and is one of the best-known chefs in India. Theobroma is a much-loved food destination and is widely recognised as the best bakery in India, regularly voted as the most popular cake/confectionery shop in Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, and in Delhi NCR.
Kainaz lives in Mumbai, with her husband and daughter. She enjoys reading, travelling and running.
Theobroma Social Media & Website
Kainaz on Social Media
Baking a Dream; The Theobroma Story
A memoir by Kainaz Messman Harchandrai with Tina Messman Wykes
Kainaz’s Contact Details
Kainaz Messman Harchandrai