KOCHI: Synonymous with Onam is the sumptuous sadya. With Onam celebrations going on all over the city, sadya suddenly tops the priority everywhere. This is also the time for catering services, hotels, restaurants and bakers to mint some extra money. Joining the bandwagon are almost all caterers and hotels in the city, which have put up advertisements of their delectable dishes and payasam.
The majority of orders come from corporate companies and educational institutions. According to Vishnu, a resident, people here don’t have the time and patience to prepare the traditional sadya, so they opt for catering services. “Time and space are issues. It needs a great effort to prepare a sadya. If we get it at our doorstep with payasam and banana leaf, people would surely go for it,” he says.
Nila Caterers, one of the leading catering services in Kochi, has come up with an Onam gift box, a unique way to present sadya. “We wanted to give a different experience to customers, so we wrapped the sadya along with banana leaf in a gift box,” says Santhosh, general manager of Nila Caterers. The box contains 25 dishes including two payasams.
“Most of the orders are from IT companies. The gift box will remove the difficulties of transportation and serving,” adds Santhosh. According to him, they are getting around 600 sadya orders a day. The gift box is sold at Rs 250. Around 120 sadyas are sold at their restaurant daily. “The sales will double on Tuesday and Wednesday. Mostly youngsters are the ones who root for delivery services.”
They are also conducting payasam mela, where paalada payasam is the most sold one.The payasam mela at Calicut Notebook, Kaloor, too has garnered a lot of fans. “Parippu payasam and paalada are the best-selling ones. We are getting a good amount of orders via Swiggy, Zomato and Uber Eats,” says Midhun, an employee of the restaurant. On average, six litres of each payasam are being sold daily.As for Vinayaka Caterers, the most prominent one in Kochi, the season is the most profitable one. “A lot happens during this period,” says an employee.
‘Online delivery is a boon’
According to Karthik Murali, founder, Eat Kochi Eat, online delivery platforms are a boon for the bachelors and young families who are celebrating Onam away from their homes. “You will indeed miss the fun of making a sadya, but it’s better than missing one. They could now get a complete delicious sadya experience by making few taps on their smartphone. I see this as a very positive change,” he says.