Japanese restaurants will flood the market and Indian regional cuisines will be big
If 2007 was the Year of the Chinese Restaurant, 2008 will be the Year of the Japanese Restaurant.
So far, almost every Japanese restaurant in India served either sushi, teppanyaki or both, but nothing more. Apart from Sakura in Delhi’s Hotel Metropolitan, no restaurant serves a full representation of the cuisine. Now, menus are being beefed up. At 19 Oriental Avenue in Delhi’s Shangri La, appetisers like wheat miso with cucumber, fermented squid and others have arrived.
In addition, a prominent restaurateur is set to set up a Japanese-inspired restaurant, the Taj Group will open a branch of Wasabi in Taj Mahal Hotel at Man Singh Road, Sakura is set to open a branch in Gurgaon and a five-star chain is toying with the idea of a niche within Japanese food, even while 360 degrees and Tiffin at The Oberoi New Delhi and Mumbai put in place a Japanese cold appetiser and more courses on their menu. Dubai chain Japengo (short for Japan on the go) has just opened in Mumbai and most significant of all, Four Seasons has a 90-seater Japanese restaurant in its soon-to-open Mumbai branch.
Will 2008 finally see the emergence of regional cuisine? ITC is set to open hotels in Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai and with Major Rehman, executive director (Hotels, Food and Travel), ITC Ltd., such a champion of regional cuisine, it is not too far-fetched to conjecture that some excitement awaits us vis a vis culinary gems of regional cooking. Coffee Break brewed coffee is set to be taken to the next level, in stylish settings, served with interesting nibbles. Expect a range of olive oils, hams, cheeses and chocolates from around the world at the new delicatessen.