Like other great success stories, after pursuing graduation together from Singapore, two friends Ajit Singh and Arpan Gupta started their business with a sense of ambition, an understanding of the culture of the hospitality industry and the need of something interesting to do on a Friday night.
Ajit and Arpan entered the restaurant space with Cheenos in Noida in 2010, exploring north Indian, Mughlai and Asian cuisines and experimenting with a dazzling fairy-lit exterior. Now they are successfully running Anglow, India's first Anglo-Indian Themed Whiskey Bar and Kitchen.
Over the years, they founded Xiian that offered continental cuisine, brought the taste of Mughal era with Handiwala and established Cheenos in Goa at the most happening place - Baga.
Arpan’s family has a business background. He always aspired to establish something of his own. With a unique set of HR and Management skills, he’s the backbone of the business operations at Anglow restaurant.
In an interview with Restaurant India, Co-founder of Anglow, Arpan Gupta, speaks about the importance of location for a restaurant.
Being in the Industry
I have been in this industry for quite a long time now, and over the last 10 years, I have seen a drastic growth in the industry, from International chains to domestic, giving rise to exciting new concepts in F&B industry, offering new and innovative service elements. So, there has been a rapid change in the preferences of the audience. This can be attributed on account of changing demographics, growing disposable income, urbanization and growth of the retail industry. There is now wide acceptance for the segments like fine dining, casual dining, quick service restaurants and cafes in the recent past.
Perfection is very important in order to achieve our target and win over our competitors.
The Concept of Anglow
Not everyone knows that Shami kebabs served have an imprint of Anglo-Indian culinary finesse to them. I wanted the patrons to get a sense of the community that sprouted in our own lands and a cuisine that has endured for the last 150 years. This is the genesis of Anglow, India's first Anglo Indian-themed whisky bar and kitchen.
The cuisines carry a lot of history to it. The dishes have been probably cooked around us very often, but we fail to identify them because of the lack of information in public domains. To bring back its significance among the Delhi crowd, we thought of serving nostalgia on a platter through these remarkable dishes.
Anglow is situated in the bustling food scene of Khan Market taking you to a fascinating trip to the memory lane by serving Anglo-Indian delights. Little did we know that these cuisines were relished in a formal setting - on evenings when English Sahibs, Indian Princes and bejewelled ladies would gather together to enjoy the finest whiskeys and wines.
Matching that historic standard of its legacy, Anglow offers an elaborate menu prepared laboriously with judicious use of spice blends. Click to Read More About Anglow
Pros and cons of being a Partner at a Restaurant
Starting a business with a partner offers many benefits, the least of which is having someone to share the many responsibilities of running one. With the proper planning and consideration, a partnership can be an unequivocal success. Also, the agreement of both parties is always important for major decisions.
Mistakes made while drafting the plan for previous restaurants
When I started the project- “Detroit Garage Bar and Kitchen” in CP, we suffered for a year due to a trivial issue. As soon as we signed the lease, we learnt that Delhi excise had stopped issuing new licenses. So, along with the right choice of theme and location, timing and research are equally important for any business to run smoothly.
Khan Market at the Location for Restaurant Business
It’s important to understand what to look out for when choosing a restaurant location, even if it is your first or 20th restaurant. The idea is to start getting traffic from day one itself and determine visibility by looking at footfall and car traffic patterns. So that people who walk past your restaurant make a last-minute choice to pull in and check it out. Not just this, there a few mandatory factors to consider for a perfect location and that are accessibility, correlation of restaurant location, rent and evaluation of competition.
Competition can be a good thing if it doesn’t hurt your business. And having a business in Khan Market, which is one of the posh areas for standalones in Delhi, we get the opportunity to have more exposure to the niche crowd of the Capital.
For us, Khan Market is an appropriate location with our target audience and required traffic. We are playing on the theme of Anglo-Indian cuisine which is best known for the amalgamation of European techniques with Indian dishes and vice versa. As a result, with a judicial blend of spices, the dishes that churn out of our kitchens are mellowed down suiting the taste palates of Indians as well as expats. Delhi is a hub of embassy and MNCs with many expats and Khan Market being one of the most preferred and Asia’s most expensive market. Anglow welcomes all well-travelled patrons for a wholesome meal after shopping around.
Anglow is a kind of product which will only work well in tier 1 cities. Most likely, we are looking forward to opening Anglow in metropolitan cities like Mumbai by the end of the year and then later in Bengaluru.
Tips to open a Concept Restaurant in Delhi
You can toy with countless ideas while setting up your restaurant. The most intriguing, however, challenging stage comes when you are choosing the theme/concept. As a restaurateur, you should comprehend that the theme goes past a cautiously picked location and a well-structured menu along with a right judgment of the target audience.
A concept is a combination of good food, pleasant mood, ambience and palatable service. A good theme is key to create a unique stamp in the market. The concept of your competitor’s restaurant is also one of the most important factors to consider because it greatly determines how many people would come to your restaurant. So never underestimate the power of your competitors.
Also, with the food industry being most dynamic, nothing ever remains constant. Therefore, keeping up with the food trends, what is available in the market and what not is another major factor to consider for the right pull for the audience.