In an interview with Restaurant India, Maria Priya of Tanddori Taal shares about her idea of starting a north Indian restaurant.
Love for food knows no boundaries and for this South Indian couple Priya and Sathya, opening a North Indian cuisine restaurant had no geographical or direction barriers. Giving wings to their passion for food and the hotel industry, they started Tandoori Taal four years ago to serve ‘asli desi khana’ to Bengalureans. Excerpts from the interview:
How did you conceptualize Tandoori Taal?
For food lovers who love the ‘asli desi khana’ (genuine Indian food) this is the place to visit. Of late, we are seeing that authentic Indian food is becoming less popular among the urban population for many reasons like millennials don’t have time to cook or don’t know how to cook in the authentic way. To meet this need, we opened Tandoori Taal. Not only does the food remind you of ‘desi khana’, but even the aroma and the décor of the restaurant take you back to the farms of Punjab or the tasty foods of Delhi.
You don’t hail from a restaurateur family or have no experience in this industry. What brought you here?
I was the general manager at Gokaldas Exports in garment exporting business for 16 years and my husband was a businessman. Today, if we are here, we can only say that passion brought us here. When I quit my job, I decided that I had to do something that I love and since my passion lies in food, we had to embark on this journey.
We see a fad for international cuisines like Japanese, Vietnamese or French. How do you stay relevant in the market with North Indian cuisine?
True, now that people are well-travelled and are aware of global cuisines, they want to try different things. But go anywhere in the world, home food is always the favourite. Nothing can match the comfort of your home food. We cater the food people know, are familiar with, and love to go back and eat.
The competition in food services industry is very stiff with new places opening every day. How do you stay afloat?
For every new restaurant that opens, there is also one that gets shutdown. Yes, the competition is very tight, but competitive pricing, premium quality of food has helped us to be get loyal customers who love our food.
What are your expansion plans?
We started off with a small, cosy restaurant and today we are here with Tandoori Taal. In the next 5 years, we want to expand with at least 10 branches in major tier 1 city.