One can follow their hearts and blend sweetness into people’s lives, just like Mariya did!
In this modern India with changing mindsets and perceptions, some stereotypical people still think women belong in the kitchen, their sole purpose is to cook food, and also their achievements and ambitions are meant to be only about cooking for the family and taking care of the house. Agreed! So many women have agreed to this idea, but by adding a little twist and flavor to the idea, because that’s how entrepreneurs roll. Yes, they may belong to the kitchen but as chefs, cooks, bakers and not just as homemakers. Yes, cooking might be the sole purpose of their lives, it better be when you own a restaurant/bakery and when cooking is your passion and not just a household chore to tick off. Yes, the achievements and ambitions may revolve around cooking when the world loves your food and you beautifully take care of your business, your house, your dreams and of course your kitchen!
Today cooking is not just a hobby, but a passion for many who have put that into some serious business like Mariya Kagalwala the entrepreneur, the enthusiast, the baker, the innovator, the creator of “CHOCO-LIIIIICIOUS”, based in Pune. Choco-liiiicious specializes in customized cakes, cupcakes, brownies, chocolates, and cheesecakes. By making all these delicious and tempting foods the aim is to spread happiness and love through their products. She always likes experimenting and believes in innovation, that’s what makes them different from others and thus their customers also demand and expect the same from them. That’s why all the products are customized and crafted with utter creativity and professionalism, they do make plain stuff but that’s not their forte. They truly live up to the quote of “I tried being normal but then it turned out to be boring so I went back to being crazy again!” Their major plus points are the designs and the flavors they offer – they have around 10-12 flavors only in cupcakes, now imagine for cakes and other stuff, then sit back and fantasize about them for a while or better give them the next birthday cake order!
The journey of Choco-liiiiicious started 2 years back but its inception had taken place long back when Mariya started off with her baking career when she enrolled herself for the Bachelor’s Degree course in Hotel Management and Catering Technology. She decided to do her Masters in the same but there were some months before her course would start, so to make good use of that time she joined a patisserie and there she learned more and more about the bakery, she enjoyed baking and tried out new combinations in things over there. It was there that she realized that she loved baking more than anything. She decided to build up a medium to channelize and mold her love and curiosity for baking. That medium took shape of “Choco-liiiiicious” and after some years when she was done with her masters, she was finally ready to set sail with her new venture!
In all her dreams and adventures her family, parents, friends have been her support system throughout. They are her lucky charm, her most precious possession, they are the reason her childhood was so special and funny and she always cherishes those memories that leave her with a smile on her face no matter how life’s going, tough or easy, happening or boring, some memories can always light up your day!
Talking of memories school and college days are everyone’s favorite. Mariya in her school times never liked bunking because of her friends who made even boring lectures fun and they all used to play lots of games like small kids and making more and more memories. But turning teen and moving to college no-bunk Mariya opted for bunking and tasted the best part of college with her friends, college crushes, love and break up cycles, night outs, sleepovers, hangovers, studies, submissions, practicals and despite having so much fun still scoring good marks. School and college are fun and memorable for everyone but passing with distinction in reality check is where life has its own twists and turns.
To start up with something of your own with just some hopes and a fire of passion, is not as easy as it sounds, it may require a lot of things, but the one thing you require before anything else is the ‘Courage and Guts’ to do it and that’s how every business/startup begins. Even Mariya faced problems, she still faces problems like space constraints and storage problems for raw materials as well as completed products since she’s a home baker, also take care of the orders based on the customer needs and requirements, and yet not messing up things or your creativity, it all takes patience and some serious dedication towards whatever you do.
Every success story of entrepreneurship has to enter the sea of challenges and catch the fishes of possibilities and one is bound to one face storms and rains of disappointments, failure, and even betrayals. The key to sailing through lies in the positivity to believe in oneself you’re and keep moving. This is something even Mariya believes in that’s why every morning she looks into the mirror and wishes herself a ‘Good Morning’ with a big smile. She retains that positivity throughout the day no matter what happens and what’s going on in life, nothing should be too important to give up the smile. She likes being who she is, than letting people decide what she should look like or appear to be, ‘Be You’ is her mantra. Her inspiration is The Queen of Macarons aka Pooja Dhingra – the renowned Pastry Chef and Businesswoman from Le15 Patisserie. Mariya has a business philosophy to understand her customers’ needs and delivering accordingly. The products they offer are usually for special occasions and thus they have to be the best to make that day of their customers special, and that feeling, that smile of the customer when they like the product is worth much more than money, that is the real inspiration and motivation behind all the efforts.
We at Storified.Me wish Mariya the very best for all her dreams and aspirations and may she achieve great heights in the near future!