By Sourish Bhattacharyya
SODA Bottle Openerwala must be the most unusually attractive name that anybody could have come up for a restaurant and AD Singh has done exactly that for his Irani café slated to open at The Hub in a couple of months. But his is not the only concept restaurant that awaits the opening of The Hub, the country’s first ‘food mall’ conceptualised by DLF at its Cyber Park in Gurgaon.
Yo! China-dimsumbros duo Ashish Kapur and Ajay Saini, who have sold over 10 million dim sum at more than 50 locations across 14 cities, are making their first foray into ‘wine dining’, graduating from the mass to the class market with The Wine Company. It will be the country’s first wine-centric restaurant located in a wine shop. You’ll have to buy your bottle of wine and then get your meal paired with it. And of course, there’ll be sangria flowing like water. Kapur and Saini promise to rid wine drinking of the high prices and the stuffiness associated with it. Their price, they say, will be the lowest in Delhi-NCR. It’s nice to know there’s one restaurant that doesn’t want to squeeze the wine lover.
The other notable brands at The Hub will be Stryker, without doubt one of the most successful hangouts in the city, in the avatar of Soi 7; the seriously competing Made in Punjab and Dhaba by Claridges; Canton Spice Company of Baba Ling, the teddy bear-like popular owner of Nanking (in my opinion the best Chinese restaurant in Delhi-NCR); and the redoubtable Panchavati Gaurav, which will be the first foray into Delhi-NCR of the much-acclaimed chain of thali restaurants serving predominantly Rajasthani fare in malls across Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur, Sangamner (in Ahmadnagar district), Raipur and Jabalpur. Interestingly, it shares the wall of The Wine Company. An unusual act of cultural engineering by DLF! Other names to look out for are Hard Rock Café, Nando’s, Starbucks and California Pizza Kitchen.
The Hub will also have a food court with the usual fare — McDonald’s et al — but the real action will in the floors with the stand-alone restaurants. Gurgaon couldn’t have asked for a better treat and Delhi of course will be digging in.