In an exclusive interview with Restaurant India, Anirban Sengupta, Co-founder at What’s Up! Cafe shares that they aim to be a multicultural cafe’.
What is the story behind What’s Up!
I’m not a person from hospitality, I belong to media. I and my partner are on the upper side of 40 and we are very pleased. So we thought of creating something to please ourselves. So there was a time when we were travelling out of wanderlust; on a road trip from Seattle to Las Vegas we ended up walking up in a cafe’. First thing which caught our fancy was the mesmerizing view, we could gaze California from there. That was the time when we decided to come out into the business of hospitality. We thought of starting a Sheesha cafe’ because it was trending at that particular time that is how we come up with a place which gives different kind of ambience.
How is your place different from others?
When we started looking for properties, one thing we realised that one could have the best of interiors. Even the best of interiors fall short of what god has made i.e., nature. We thought of getting a place which is natural and found it at Southern Avenue in Kolkata city. We’re the only multi terrace cafe’ in the city, sixty percent of our cafe’ is on the terrace glimpsing lakes and nature. Sometimes there’s a problem that everyone wants to sit on terrace and we have to keep shifting them which I have never experienced in my life. Since its south facing there is always a permanent calm breeze.
How do you see the pricing at your place?
We do not charge entry fees but yes we do check on a person’s profile, we have designed our bar in such a way that automatically aids the person’s profile. It’s about the first offering, we sell scotch and above. We do not sell Indian liquor that automatically takes care of the lower end of the guest.
What is your menu all about?
When we started our restaurant in 2015, it was all about finger food and Sheesha. Then people kept asking us for more meals and then we tried our hands on more delicacies, then they asked for bar and w got a bar licence. Now What’s Up! is a proper eatery who has Continental, Mediterranean, a bit of Oriental that includes Thai and we have recently introduced Tandoor. Going forward hopefully from August, we will include the Mutton Sizzlers and lamb as well.
How are you making your brand appealing to the customer?
First thing first, I don’t consider myself as a restaurateur and I would never want to consider myself as a restaurateur. Customers are spoiled for choices especially in Kolkata where the street food is yum. Wherever you go in Kolkata, the chances are really high that you would end up having good food. I also do not believe in jargons like Fine-Dining and Casual-Dining. I think our greatest asset is our hospitality industry; it does not come with any precautionary notions. We are in the business of providing unique customer service experience. No matter how good you’re, no matter how good your food or cocktails are; at the end of the day, monotony is going to be settled. We keep innovating ourselves, In every six months we keep bringing change that includes look and feel of cafe’, includes customer experiences and we aim to be a multicultural cafe’ in India.
What are your expansion plans?
We’re definitely looking forward to open new restaurants, let’s hope for the best.