New Delhi, Jan 9: George Calombaris is synonymous with MasterChef Australia and it is befitting that Master Blaster cricketer Sachin Tendulkar is one of the celebrity chef's biggest heroes.
Calombaris, who is on the judging panel of the popular reality cooking show along with Gary Mehigan and Matt Preston, said he met Tendulkar at one of the dinners hosted by him.
"I love the people. One of my biggest heroes is Sachin Tendulkar, who also came to one of my dinners. People in India are wonderful and the fact that they love 'Masterchef Australia' is amazing," he told PTI in an interview.
The restaurateur relishes Indian cuisine, especially "regional food", and would love to try his hand at different delicacies from across the country.
"I love Indian cuisine and I am not generalising. I am talking about the regional food around the country. India is a country which opens its arms to welcome you. I just love that," he said.
Born to a Greek Cypriot mother and Egyptian father with Italian-Greek ethnicity, Calombaris draws from his heritage for inspiration.
The chef, who has a strong penchant for traditional Greek food, said he is currently exploring hangouts that offer the cuisine.
"It's going very well. We have some top restaurants within our plans covering some great Greek cuisine in the world currently.
"In Athens, we have half a dozens top restaurants that we know with amazing staff. New York City, Canada and Africa. I love the fact it is healthy cuisine," he said.
As "MasterChef Australia" is currently in its 9th season, Calombaris said he is beyond thrilled that even after a decade the show continues to make people happy.
The show airs on Monday to Friday at 9 pm only on Star World and Star World HD in India.
Talking about the upcoming instalment, the judge said the show will more or less be the same but fans should be ready for some surprises in store.
"There is always something different in it. There is a lot to love about this beautiful show that we make. We just want to make people happy.
"It is not political or judgemental. It is about poetry, food and life. So that is what it is about and we are very proud of it," Calombaris said.