Software Engineer From A Road-Side Vendor To Café Owner in Islamabad

A Pakistani entrepreneur who has blended his many passions to excel in life, Ahsan Irshad, known as ‘The Guy Who Cooks’, is a Pakistani success story who worked hard in his journey to excel at his love for cooking.

Software Engineer From A  Road-Side Vendor To Café Owner in Islamabad
Software Engineer From A Road-Side Vendor To Café Owner in Islamabad

Ahsan Irshad based in the city of Islamabad, has shared his “motivational” journey, how he went from being a humble road-side vendor to opening his own café.

The CEO of the ‘The Guy Who Cooks’ narrated his story, “I started pursuing my passion for cooking over the last two years,” the 26-year-old computer science graduate from a private University in Islamabad, worked in IT for a year before giving it up for a much more exciting career in food.

In a series of tweets, food enthusiast Ahsan Irshad shared how his vision of starting an eatery is about to come to life.

“As [the] opening of my cafe is around the corner I couldn’t help but look back at the days when I started this journey, what you see didn’t happen in single night, took me years, most of you don’t know but now I feel like y’all should know that I started this journey with an outdoor stall”.

“I felt that there was no passion in my job,” said Arshad. “When a person does not have his heart in something, he doesn’t have the necessary drive for it. My passion lay in food and adventure cooking.”

However, Ahsan Irshad at the start of his journey did not have the money required to set up

a large business. “To set up a cafe in Islamabad, you need Rs 10 to 15 lakhs (Rs1-1.5 million) at least,” he explained.

“However, I decided that if I was throwing myself into the fire, I should start somewhere small. I felt that I needed to learn all the tricks of the trade at the very beginning since I had no prior knowledge of the food business.

Talking about the humble infrastructure of his food stall, from where he started selling his food, he wrote: “There was no shop, just one tarpaulin [sheet] on top, table and grill.” The post was accompanied by a picture of Irshad standing at his food stall serving dishes in styrofoam containers.

Irshad, who also has thousands of followers on his Instagram account and and YouTube channel that mainly features his cooking ventures, wrote what made him share his journey on the internet: “I am not sharing this story and pictures for some social media clout but as motivation to all who are struggling with their goals and passion, for the love of passion you have to do anything, never be afraid of doing anything, don’t feel ashamed even if you have to start from zero.”

“One of the challenges that I faced while setting up my own stall was that the career I wanted to pursue was looked down on. I really wanted to get into it and break this taboo,” he explained.

“However, I was adamant that this is my passion and this is what I wanted to do. It is therefore very important that you keep on going despite the hurdles and keep yourself motivated,” Arshad advised.