As we are preparing for lockdown 4.0, and we’re looking at things moving into a (new) normal, one question that we are getting asked a lot is “what is the future of restaurants?”
Pre-pandemic, India’s dining-out-scene was quite happening; the Indian food movement, 50Best recognized restaurants and bars, chefs with SDGs on their menu. Exciting stuff, no?
Restaurants are businesses that first need to be financially sustainable. Some will reopen some will not.
But as we look into the future, we think this is a great opportunity to reflect on the past, at the role that restaurants played in our societies. A restaurant was more than just a place to eat. Restaurants were spaces of conviviality. But not just for the diners, restaurants were spaces for learning and growth for people who worked there. Some restaurants started movements that supported the community around them. Restaurants were spaces of care.
So how does a restaurant of the future reopen to be financially sustainable while being spaces that nurture food citizenship?
We are giving this some deep thought. If you run or work at a restaurant and are keen to brainstorm with us, write to us.
Stay Curious (and safe),
Anusha & Elizabeth
P.S. With the current dynamic situation, stories are rapidly evolving. Please re-check the date of publishing for relevancy before you share an article.
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Take a listen to these three podcasts that voice different parts of the
Indian food system.
CULTURE & COOKING
Mangoes — revered and prized by almost every culture in which they are cultivated — are a migrant fruit.
Alison Roman, the Colonization of Spices, and the Exhausting Prevalence of Ethnic Erasure in Popular Food Culture
Prateek Sadhu doesn’t want to improve Indian food, but he does want to surprise diners
“Indian cooking doesn’t have a strong history of written recipes, but an exceptionally strong one of oral tradition.”