“We are offering a limited menu with just 30-40 signature dishes. Recently, we also introduced Bento Box meals - 'Oakwood Treats'. We have both Veg and Non-Veg options from all our three restaurants (Ozaa – Mediterranean Cuisine, Soul City – Asian Cuisine and Le Bistro – European Cuisine),” said chef Altamash Patel, Executive Chef at Oakwood Premier Prestige Bangalore on how dine-in business has changed with the pandemic.
Not just QSRs and mid-sized restaurants, fine-dine restaurants have also partnered with food aggregators and also offered home delivery and takeaways for their regular patrons during the lockdown phase.
“We started off with a downsized menu to beat the cost and are now back with our full menu after almost months,” shared Nikita Poojari of Shiv Sagar by adding that as it was a global hit, it has also hit us in a big way. As the days go by, business is also taking a step by step positive attitude and we are hoping to revive fully & recover in a span of 12 to 18 months time.
A touch of local blend
“Most of our dishes are given a local touch while making sure we don’t drift away from the authenticity of the dish. Even the room amenities that we serve are all locally sourced, to give the guests a feel of Karnataka,” added Patel who also organize food festivals every 2-3 months. This year, they have celebrated Kolhapuri food festival, Mohammed Ali Road food festival, Tangra Food festival, The Royal Cuisine of Sailana festival at their rooftop-poolside restaurant Ozaa.
From including local, seasonal produce to getting the sustainability quotient in mind, chefs and restaurant owners have been working on delivering the best at the table.
“More than the innovation I would say, maintaining the authenticity of our products & service at this point of crisis,” added Poojari as she is looking at entering Delhi and Hyderabad market soon.
And, there’s no denying that the pandemic has changed the way we eat; people have become more health conscious and extra wary of what and how they consume their food. We’re finding comfort in comfort foods and going back to our roots. Ayurvedic Cuisine and Veganism are gaining popularity with people preferring plant-based meat and alternative milks.