His father passed away when he was just 16 and he took over the running of the family business, The Star of India Restaurant in London. He inherited a piece of 1950's London, flock wallpaper and all, and set about inflicting his own brand of artistic flourish. Voila; from flock to Baroque!
But with his inimitable concentration span of approximately five minutes, another revamp promptly followed. This time a cross between a Zeffirelli production and the Sistine Chapel.
The years spent managing The Star of India established the restaurant as an institution and enabled him to explode onto the restaurant and food scene.
Of course he has always been in involved in Indian cooking and yet he loves to experiment with foods from all around the world, adding elements and ingredients that bring a new dimension to a traditional dish. He is a firm believer in bringing a personal touch to cooking.
Managing a restaurant does have some perks. A regular customer at The Star happened to be a television director. They got talking and he came up with the idea of doing a cookery programme with Reza and the then Goddess of Indian cookery; Madhur Jaffrey.
Aside from cooking, Reza leans towards the arts and has a passion for music, having come to realise that food and music are linked. "A symphony of taste which feeds the senses is like beautiful music which nourishes the soul."