BENGALURU: Cloud kitchens, also known as dark kitchens or ghost kitchens, are commercial facilities purpose-built to produce food for delivery, as was done by FreshMenu, Faaso’s, Behrouz Biryani and Khichdi Experiment by Ola. They have the advantages of lower rents and minimal overheads, and many restaurants in Bengaluru, which are witnessing reduced dine-in customers now, are reinventing their spare kitchen capacity to launch pocket-friendly, delivery-only brands offering global cuisines.
Take, for instance, HakkaChow, the newest baby on the block from Lounge Hospitality, which has given us the Sanchez and Sriracha restaurants. Helmed by culinary director, chef Vikas Seth, it showcases Asian market-style dishes incorporating fresh and local ingredients with house-made sauces. They plan to introduce three more home-delivery brands -- Bangalore Pizza Company, Mad Mex and Garam Masala.
That Curry Place, the brainchild of the team behind 1Q1, has an elaborate menu of curries from around the world. Partner Anirudh Kheny says the menu, comprising curries from Southeast Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, and other countries, will change regularly and the food will be delivered packed in compartmentalised boxes accompanied with staples and condiments.
Flayvor Co., a collaboration between URU and Maratt, has launched four cloud kitchens to provide a global experience to diners. While Hand-made dishes out Italian pizzas and pasta with premium ingredients, Roohi serves traditional North Indian cuisine with mix and match combos, and The Great Wok pan-Asian food focuses on starter dishes. Also on offer will be Charlie Who? gourmet sundaes.Asian kitchen Ginger Tiger is now a delivery-only brand serving stir-fry meal bowls which you can personalise. The menu also has an a-la-carte selection of appetisers, curries, staples and all-in-one meal boxes containing the main course, appetiser, salad and dessert.
Patrons of the erstwhile Windsor Pub need not despair since their old gastropub favourites will now be served by Windsor Food Factory, led by chef Rohan Belliappa. The nostalgia-laced, delivery-only menu will include Pandi Fry, Chicken Bafat, Andhra Chilly Chicken, Kadai Paneer, and more. If you are craving for Hyderabadi dum biryanis, then you can consider Biryani 2 Home, which delivers mutton, chicken and vegetarian biryanis, Mughlai char-grilled kebabs, and combo biryani packs with kebabs, dessert and soft beverages.
Meanwhile, BLR Ventures is tantalising our taste buds with two delivery-only brands. My Bowl serves Indian, Continental and Chinese comfort meals in a bowl and our pick is the Dhaba Chicken Curry Rice Bowl. Their other brand is Churroz, serving Spanish golden-fried pastries and we must make a special mention of the Oreo Chocolate Churros stuffed with dark chocolate, garnished with Oreo dust.Ministry Of Curries by Desmonds is set to serve curries from around the world, packaged and delivered in glass jars that will keep the food hot and make it convenient to eat. Go for Pandi Curry, Vegetable Stew with Idiyappam or Pork Vindaloo with Sanna.
Juzi has a subscription service of fresh fruit bowls delivered daily to your doorstep via a cold chain. The fruits come in various options for skin care, hair care, weight loss, energiser and more. Another new arrival will be The Indian Canteen - Streatery inspired from Indian streets. Think samosas, kachoris, Desi Butter Chicken Burrito, Aam Panna, Desi Lassi and Kala Khatta Sherbet. You can find more details for these brands on their social media handles and food delivery apps. Bon appétit!(The writer is a Bengaluru-based hospitality professional, food lover and travel enthusiast)