Born and brought up in Kolkata, Santanu always had the dream of owning his own restaurant. Running a venture for 14 years, he finally decided to do something apart from owning a resto-bar. He is soon to start a pub which will attract and welcome the youths of Kolkata. Excerpts from the interview:
How did the idea of doing something of your own strike to you in the F&B industry?
I was into some other business earlier before I shifted towards this profession. I was always passionate about starting my own venture in the food industry. One day the idea clicked which helped me in establishing my own restaurant.
Tell us something about your journey.
I have been born and brought up in Kolkata. After completing my education, I was involved in construction business which went for years. Later I realized my dream and passion for the food industry which drove me to enter the food industry.
How did you come up with the name ‘Hing Bar and Restaurant’?
At its inception, the restaurant catered pure Bengali cuisine and tandoor. The name randomly came to my mind where Hing we know in India is a spice which is extracted from the dried sap of the stem. We, Bengali people, use Hing in almost every dish they prepare. Thus, the name Hing Bar and Restaurant.
How the transition came from running a restaurant to a resto-bar?
After running the business for four years, customers started requesting for continentals and other cuisines which are currently trending. Later, I realized that the people were heading to resto-bars instead of normal restaurants serving the same cuisines. Adapting to the trend, I decided to shift my gear and modify my restaurant into a resto-bar. In fact, I also lost many customers when the resto-bar concept came into action.
What were the key elements while coming up with the interiors of your restaurant?
I wanted my restaurant to provide a cozy kind of environment. I made sure that the whole ambiance is well crafted to give a calm and composite vibe to the customers. My venue does not favor playing loud music as I want to provide a dining experience to our customers spending a quality family time.
How do you see the bar trends changing with time?
The youth is inclining towards the pub and lounge sections which are evolving rapidly in the F&B industry. The demand for such models has gained huge momentum, eventually causing many such ventures to establish in this modern time. Currently, I am working towards opening my second venture which is going to be a pub in Kolkata itself. We are still working ' on its name which will be finalized within a week or so.
How has been the journey for Hing Bar and Restaurant so far?
Hing Bar and Restaurant started in the year 2004. It has been approximately 14 long years and the journey is still going on. People’s love towards my venture continues to grow by the day which keeps me motivated in serving them. This brand has adapted to the ongoing trends in the industry and is walking towards the road of success. I personally keep an eye on everything making sure that things are just perfect.
What are your expansion plans?
I am already working on a new project, a pub in Kolkata itself. I am taking baby steps and do aims towards moving pan India.