By Ayo Onikoyi
Former Queen Tourism, Osatohanmwen Iwinosa Radiance is making waves in the hospitality industry in Edo State. The 22-year-old former Beauty Queen is set to open the first truck restaurant in Benin City known as Gemini Gourmet Restaurant while hoping to replicate the same feat in other cities in Nigeria in due time.
In a brief chat with Potpourri she revealed how she became a professional chef.
She said, “It took a lot of courage, hard work, dedication and passion to follow this dream, It wasn’t easy leaving Benin City to Abuja to achieve this dream. I left Benin City to Abuja to attend a culinary school (Red Dish Chronicles) with just my school fees with no place to stay. It was tough but I was very hopeful that God would do it and He did it”.
On the inspiration behind Gemini Gourmet Truck Restaurant she affirmed that Gemini Gourmet is the first mobile kitchen and bar in Edo State, saying, “When they were constructing the truck in Abuja (because the food truck is made in Nigeria) some of my friends advised that I leave it in Abuja and not bring it to Benin City. In their words, “ Benin is not exposed,” which was a very wrong statement. As a daughter of the soil I have always hoped to do something different in my hometown and I have always said that my first restaurant will be in Benin City. I am so happy to bring This masterpiece to my home town.”
“Also let me say Gemini Gourmet is a blessing from God. Back then in 2019, I was still a student in culinary school. Whenever I prayed I would write that I wanted to own a restaurant in 2020 and open it on my birthday June 9th.
I wrote that prayer without knowing where I was going to get the money or investors to start the project. I just told God and today Gemini Gourmet is launching June 9th, 2021 with a 20% discount on all our menu.
“Everything makes perfect sense now, back in 2020 my mentor Chef Stone launched his food truck in Abuja, I did my internship in his food truck and I loved every moment working in his truck. There was one time I worked with Chef Fregz, one of Africa’s biggest chefs. I can never forget that day we were driving somewhere when he asked me what I wanted to do after my culinary education. I told him I wanted to own a restaurant in Benin City and he said I should not open a restaurant but a food truck. There was no food truck in Benin City, he said I could own the first food truck in Benin City. From that moment he said that to me, it was planted in my heart. Today Gemini Gourmet is the first food truck in Benin city.