Virat Kohli's One8 commune debuts in Hyderabad, blending style and culinary excellence

Virat Kohli’s One8 Commune, known for its blend of modern elegance and relaxed comfort, debuts in Hyderabad at Sattva Knowledge City
Virat Kohli and Vartik Tihara
Virat Kohli and Vartik Tihara

HYDERABAD : A harmonious mix of modern elegance and relaxed comfort is what cricket legend Virat Kohli’s One8 Commune offers. After a successful presence in Delhi, Bengaluru, Kolkata and other cities, it debuts in Hyderabad, situated in Sattva Knowledge City, Hitech City. Virat Kohli is a name recognised not just by cricket fans but by many others. Moving beyond his cricketing excellence, he has expanded his portfolio with One8 Commune, a venture he co-founded with his friend Vartik Tihara. This lifestyle and hospitality venture embodies Kohli’s personal ethos and style, offering a unique blend of culinary delights and a vibrant social experience.

The genesis of One8 Commune

The name “One8” is derived from Kohli’s jersey number, 18, which holds significant personal and professional meaning for him. The term “Commune” evokes a sense of community and shared experiences, aligning with Kohli’s vision of creating spaces where people can come together, enjoy good food, and make lasting memories. Launched in partnership with prominent hospitality player, One8 Commune aims to revolutionise the dining experience in India. “One8 is a brand owned by Virat. We used to play cricket together in Delhi long back. I met Virat in 2016 regarding a business idea. Virat told me, ‘If you want to do anything, do it under my brand.’ From that time, it’s been One8 Commune,” explains Vartik Tihara. “Our idea is to open 20 to 25 outlets by 2025, with the Hyderabad one being the ninth. We also plan to expand internationally, eyeing Dubai or London.”

Ambiance and design

The interior of the 190-seater space boasts a stylish blend of contemporary design elements with warm, earthy tones that create a welcoming atmosphere. The use of natural materials like wood and stone, along with plush seating and soft lighting, enhances the overall dining experience. The sports memorabilia subtly integrated into the decor pays homage to Kohli’s illustrious cricket career without overwhelming the space. “The interior of each space is almost similar to the other outlets. Virat’s signed jersey is displayed, and he is actively involved in the process, including food trials and giving genuine feedback,” says Vartik.

Culinary excellence

At the heart of One8 Commune is its diverse and innovative menu, catering to a wide range of culinary preferences. The restaurant offers a fusion of global cuisines, emphasising fresh, high-quality ingredients. Signature dishes often reflect Kohli’s own preferences, including healthy options that align with his fitness-conscious lifestyle. The menu is crafted to cater to both adventurous foodies and those seeking comfort in familiar flavours. One8 Commune places a strong emphasis on health-conscious dining, featuring nutritious options, including vegan and gluten-free dishes.

Elaborating on why they chose Hyderabad, Vartik says, “I think Hyderabad is very special. The infrastructure and growth are great.” He adds, “The basic 80% menu across outlets is the same, with a few local flavours added. For Hyderabad, we have Soya Haleem and Hyderabadi Biryani served in a bamboo. Along with that, there’s Virat’s favourite menu, like Avocado Tartare, Avocado Flatbread, and Mushroom Googly Dim Sum.”

Tasting the favourites

We made sure to taste Kohli’s favourite dishes and were not surprised — they were exceptional. The Mushroom Googly Dim Sum, made with assorted mushrooms, cream cheese, and truffle oil, melted in the mouth. The Avocado Tartare was decadent with crispy corn and Sriracha sauce. We also tasted Kasundi Fish Tikka and Lamb Seekh Kebab in Laal Maas Gravy. The non-vegetarian dishes were mouthwatering. We concluded our tasting with Tiramisu Cornetto which had a nice kick of coffee along with crispy wafer. The cocktail menu is equally impressive, featuring a range of creative and classic concoctions. The Peach Iced Tea was a perfect respite in the hot weather.

Virat as a partner

Discussing the best and worst aspects of having Virat as a business partner, Vartik shares, “We have been friends for a long time, so I know him well. He is a global star with massive visibility and a fan following, but expectations are also high. People expect a lot from him, and that is something we have to be really careful with.”

Whether you’re a cricket fan or simply a food lover, One8 Commune offers an experience that is sure to leave a lasting impression. With its top-notch service, diverse menu, and stylish decor, it is a must-visit for anyone looking to enjoy a sophisticated yet unpretentious meal.

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The New Indian Express