Interview with Chef Sujit Bose

A few years ago, we took the interview of Chef Sujit Boss for the “Spice & Food” magazine. Here is the part of this interview:

Chef. Portrait in Hospitality / Food Industry

When and how did you decide that you want to be a chef, and what made you decide that you would choose being a kitchen professional?
A passion for eating and making people happy, serving them good food and tickling their taste buds made me decide to become a Chef. Also, the creativity and the science involved in using different ingredients and processing them gives me the utmost happiness and satisfaction.

How did the Institute of Hotel Management help you to improve your cooking skills?
Hotel management gave me the basic creativity and confidence to play with fire and change my outlook towards the job of a chef

Who made the biggest influence on your cooking style?
Reading and internet made the biggest influence on my cooking style.

One of your main specialization is the Chinese cuisine. Can you describe the main health benefits of Chinese cuisine?
Chinese food is very simple – steamed or stir-fried so the nutrients of each ingredient used are intact. Also, a minimal amount of saturated fats are used and absolutely no usage of butter/ghee.

What ingredients are commonly used in Chinese cuisine and more importantly when?
Soya – A basic ingredient is used very extensively in Chinese food. It is used in all forms like soya beancurd, soya sauce, soya bean preserved, soya noodles. Szechuan pepper is a spice used in Szechuan Cuisine.

How is Chinese cuisine different from other Asian cuisines?
Mode of stir-frying ad steaming is used in authentic Chinese food. What is your favorite food to eat and to cook? Fish in black bean sauce with Chinese vegetables. What do you prefer to make when you cook at home?

What do you prefer to make when you cook at home?
Dal and rice cooked together called Khichdi. Fried pakoras and masala omelette is my special food for a rainy day.

What is your favorite gadget in the kitchen?
Combi-oven as you can bake and steam in it.

Do you have any favorite sauce?
X.O. sauce – Made with dried scallops, shrimps, chilli and other ingredients.

In India, a lot of people are vegetarian, what is the best vegetarian dish from your point of view?
For breakfast – South Indian food is best. For the main course during lunch/dinner, north Indian combinations like paneer/dal/sabzi with roti/rice. For snacks, Delhi-chaat and Gujarati farsaan are popular.

Which spice or combination of spices is your favorite?
Five Spice, which is a Chinese spice combination. It includes: Szechuan Pepper, Star anise, Cloves, Cinnamon and Fennel. Sweet/Aromatic/Spicy combination. Modern people do not have time to cook because of their hectic lifestyles and end up eating lot of junk food every day.

What can you suggest to them to change the situation in a healthy way?
Eat lots of fresh fruits, unpolished grains and rice to have a healthy meal. Drink a lot of water.

Is there a crowd-pleaser that’s delicious, good for you and easy to cook?
Simple pan-fried noodles with different sauces and vegetables. One can use meat/seafood in it as well. You are the head of the big team, how do you make them listen to you? Before a team leader, I am a team player. So I play a role as much as a team leader and a team player.

Read the entire interview and get two delicious recipes by Chef Bose,  subscribe using the form below and download the magazine.

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The age of interactive technology for the restaurant business.

“Interactive technologies represent innovative ways to make your restaurant more attractive, more interesting, more hi-tech. These are not just “catches” and certainly not new elements of decor, rather, they create a unique atmosphere in a venue which will become part of urban life, the main attraction which is not to be missed.”

Restaurant business is certainly not a cakewalk to establish. From the 100 restaurants opened this year, only about 20% will survive to next year. The owners do try to experiment with the venue, style and interiors but can we deny the fact that the customer delivery system has remained same for ages. It has been a constant and thus, monotonous process of taking a table, ordering, eating and paying. The implementation of advanced ideas changes things faster than ever.. In such a competitive scenario, some food businesses are catching up faster as they drop the traditions that lasted for centuries. and move ahead while embracing latest trends.

As food branding experts, let us work it out for you. Firstly, a restaurant is just not a place to eat. It is, rather a hub where people do get-to-gather, arrive for a responding ambiance, socialize, make friends and exchange ideas.

Ukrainian businessman Dmitry Kostic is the founder of Kodisoft and numerous other projects. Few years back, he decided to work on building the technology for future restaurants. A program namely Interactive Restaurant Technology (IRT) was being launched by him in 2011. To explain you briefly, IRT enables a customer to makes them ordering online and chat with some other customer.

Another top feature is that the customer gains the sweet authority of changing the ambiance around via the touch panel. Two restaurants based on IRT have already succeeded in amusing the customers in a short span few months. The company Interactive Restaurant Technology made money by leaps within the short period of three years only.

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Technological Challenges

There is a vast difference in imagining something majestic and turning it into reality. The three challenges were –

a) The touchscreen panel used in iPad can not be expanded beyond 23-30 inches. And with the screen made of indium-titanium-oxide (ITO), the speed of the electrons will hardly impose any effect.
b) The thickness of the glass in an iPad is not more than 1.4 mm. And the glass used for the table had to be around 10 mm thick.
c) It was also crucial to develop a touchscreen panel that could be used by multiple people at the same time. The maximum usage was limited to 10 people.Solution
As a result, a new technology was worked upon which did not include any analog. For instance, the interactive restaurant can identify the object by its shape. The project was further submitted to Microsoft BizPark that also helped in reducing the money spending license of visual studio and so on. The model was improvised so that could be applied directly after the completion.Why

Interactive Technology
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The advantage of interactive technology is not only effective solution which attract on its own. It also helps to save on all printing expenses and reduce waiters till two. When interactive tables combined with interactive panels, restaurant interior may be changed in minutes, and it saves on expensive season decoration or give advantage to events.While restaurant income is usually based on food sales, with interactive restaurants IT tables give an ability to earn on affiliate programs. In this new restaurants, the income from FnB sales and affiliate programs from the relevant brands is 50/50. While client eats he can chat with other people, order food, or do shopping.

Key characteristics

  • Greater profits
  • Guaranteed increase in the average checkIncreased number of customers due to the new format of a venue
  • Reduced expenses in attracting customers, thanks to the uniqueness of the restaurant
  • Abolishes printed menus and other presentation materials
  • Use of interactive surfaces for advertising purposes
  • Service improvement
  • Customers may choose a preferred language
  • Customers may be informed about any dish with one touch on the interactive surfaces (including its history, ingredients, calorie count, recommended drinks to accompany dishes, etc.)
  • Instant order without waiting for a waiterHigh level of comfort.

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New opportunities for you

  • Preventing incidents of dishonesty among the staffStrict control over the entire process of processing of orders
  • Instant orders, direct to the kitchen
  • Reducing time spent on service of a single order
  • Increasing the customer flow
  • Providing customers with unique services
  • Turning customers into free advertising agents (word of mouth advertising)

New experiences for customers

  • Socializing with other patronsGames, video, chat
  • Live online broadcasts from the kitchen
  • Interactive guidebooks
  • Taxi booking
  • Great impressions
  • Interactive table also helps to collect data about the client, and, as a result, provides a better service for a returning customers.
  • Besides interactive tabletops, many things can be interactive too: partitions, walls, floor, interactive terminal or bar, POS.

The Сuisine

The interactive features of the restaurant will become the basis of its concept. In addition, the customer would certainly be offered really delicious food. We will ensure that the food is of the highest quality, by selecting the best chef for your chosen cuisine – be it European, Italian, Japanese, Russian, Mexican, or any other.

Corporate Identity

It is difficult to overestimate the importance of the graphic presentation of a product. The name of the restaurant, its logo and corporate identity deserve the same consideration to attract customers. By creating an interactive restaurant based on unique technologies of management and communication, we create a brand that will be embodied in highly attractive graphics and fonts containing brilliant content. This branding book will be a guide to all external communications – from your business card to the most beautiful waitresses in the world.interactive-444

Interior

An interactive restaurant is first of all a beautiful functional venue, which harmoniously combines technology and design. We will help you design a unique and lively atmosphere that further becomes the Unique Selling Proportion (USP) of your business.

Equipment

If the kitchen is the “heart” of the interactive restaurant, our equipment will become its soul. There are many kinds of interactive surfaces: interactive tables, floors, walls, partitions, bar stands, quick order terminals and electronic queues. Each of them has its specific function – service, entertainment, time-saving or information referencing. Together they create a unique all-encompassing interactive complex, which will transform the entire restaurant into an intelligent, user-friendly system, both for you and your guests.

Promotion

We have no doubt that opening a restaurant of this kind will make the news in the media. But even before the all-important ribbon cutting ceremony, we will develop and begin implementing a marketing program to promote your business to ensure that the new project progresses in a well planned, thought through manner that is guaranteed to succeed. Our experience based on similar projects shows that interactive restaurants attract great interest and competent promotion makes it the most popular venue in the city.

Whether you decide to take a step towards creating an interactive restaurant or not, this project is definitely worth attention to. Besides, Dmitri Kostic proves that investments will be returned within a first year, as technology is new and many economical factors were included. Let’s hope to see first interactive restaurant in New Delhi, Who knows 🙂

All pictures by Kodisoft

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Shopping for customers, competition for market

With a cut-throat competition among the too many grocery owners, it has become difficult to retain the same amount of customers. When it comes to the daily use or personal care shopping, every other local or branded store offers these products. So, what decides the preference of the consumers?
Locality?
Branding and execution?
Availability of favorite brands?
Cordial relations with the store-owner?
According to a survey conducted by Ipsos, an expert company in the area of market research, very few customers favor sticking to one store for grocery shopping. The report also showed that consumers often visit multiple stores to grab the best deal. Also, they tend to choose different stores for different types of buying. Quite perishable products like meat and vegetables may compel the customer to buy more from a particular shop.
Going more into the details, another survey conducted by Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), states that Food is the largest retail consumption category in India. Staples, dairy, fruits and vegetables account for nearly 66 percent of food expenditure amongst consumers. It also revealed that although shopping in India is usually led by women of the family, the other members also join in. The study was conducted between 4,000 customers. Location, relation with the store-owner and arrangement of the commodities were some other determinants for the buyers.
Thus, we suggest that ideally a grocery store should brand itself in a fashion that appeals to all segments of the customers; be it the kids or the middle-aged man or the college goers! While the branding has to be understood by a large target audience it still has to be memorable and convey the ideas and messages of your brand. The target audience of the store will depend on the product assortment, the general cost of the product and location.
Through a proper market study, the retailers must try to include as many product brands as possible and arrange them in the most organized manner (by the type of the product or by brands) in the store. Label the store section. Display small or more expensive products such as chocolate within the reach near the cash counter. Besides, a strategic location and maintaining healthy relations with the consumer will surely help the grocery. Guide your customer secretly with the instore navigation to build up the pleasant memories of the shop interior and service, let them come again.
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