How this startup created a market for invite based paid dining

Short Description
In an interview to Restaurant India, Munaf Patel, Chief Eating Officer at The Bohri Kitchen talks about the idea of starting this paid concept dining trend.
  • Nusra Deputy Features Editor
Restaurant India

Started as an idea to just invite friends and family over good food, The Bohri Kitchen has become a brand in itself in last two years in Mumbai’s dining out scenario. From top bureaucrats, industrialist including celebrities like Boman Irani ordering food from the only place serving traditional Bohri food to non bohri’s, The Bohri Kitchen sensed the great potential that the market offers both financially and in terms of cuisine and food.

Created out of the need to keep her mother Nafisa Kapadia busy at home, Munaf Kapadia who left his high paid job at Google sensing that this could be a great hidden idea to be explored. “Initially it was not a business idea. It was to keep my mom busy and occupied,” adds Munaf who created first of its kind invite based paid concept dining culture in Mumbai’s cosmopolitan nature.

The first kick

There was no option out there for Bohri food for non bohri’s to relish and that’s how it started. “Initially we never thought it this way it was just what my mom does the best and the sudden answer was she cooks really good food. Hence, I asked my friends to come home and try her food. As I got that this is picking I realised the potential as people started coming back to us since they don’t get this food anywhere,” adds Munaf whose colleague started taking the food to office and then the word of mouth helped the mother-son duo call strangers for the weekly pop up that they started doing. “We invite people home twice a week to experience our food and try it out,” shares Munaf.

Running on concept

Since, the restaurant and food industry is booming with new trends and changes. Munaf’s idea got picked and that’s how he entered into a six day delivery services catering to the urban crowds in Mumbai. “Our average order value is Rs 600-800 with 99 per cent non bohri customers,” points the 26 year old who proudly calls himself a Chief Eating Officer. The start up is getting around 15-20 deliveries a day and are catering to 25-35 people on weekends at home.

It’s all about socializing

The Bohri Kitchen became popular via word of mouth appreciation and the social gatherings that the duo has. Hence, instead of taking the orders traditional way Munaf is taking orders via Face Book. “People write to us on FB and that’s how we invite them after doing a background check before calling them home. We have a limited number for invitations” he further adds saying that he is not jumping into the restaurant business though there might be a possibility at later stage.

The foodlicious experience

A mix of Gujarati and Yemenese food, Bohri food is a foodies guilt in itself. A typical experience at Bohri Kitchen begins with Mutton Keema samosa, chicken cutlet, Raan masala, mutton khichda, chicken dum biryani. And, for the desserts one may gauge on malai khaja and feerni amongst others. “We do a fix 7 course meals at Bohri Kitchen,” says Munaf pointing that there is tremendous opportunity in the market though there is lots of challenges and error. One needs to find a way to balance between their authenticity and the idea.”

Dreaming Big

The group has plans to increase its numbers of online orders to around 30-40 deliveries in a day before they look at other market as potential. “We may look at Delhi and Pune market in next few months,” comments Munaf.

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