Here’s news for singletons planning to dine out but worried about being dumped at the worst table in a dingy corner. A small, but significant beginning to make the single diner comfortable has been made at the city’s five-star-hotels, which receive the maximum number of solo business travellers, and standalone restaurants.
Areas around open kitchens at Masala Bay (Taj Land’s End), Stax (Hyatt Regency), India Jones (Hilton) and Tiffin (The Oberoi), are marked for singles, to involve them in the cooking process.
Says chef Jitendra Kumar, executive chef Taj Land’s End, “With more and more people traveling for work, dining alone is common. We try to make the experience interactive with seats next to the open kitchen.”
Mocha has what it calls ‘community tables’, where singles can interact with each other. And there are single-seater armchairs for those who like to go completely solo. Celini (Grand Hyatt) has small tables around the restaurant, for lone diners. The idea is to not to intimidate the diner with large tables.
And chefs do their bit too. Says Chef Roberto Mancini, Chef de Cuisine, Celini, “I try to make them comfortable by going up and chatting with them.” Large portions are another problem. To beat this Tiffin has single Indian platters with small portions of dal, vegetables and papad.
Says bank executive Donald Macwan, who usually eats out alone, “Food is the primary interest for single diners, but a helping of something entertaining – a kebab maker, a sushi or tepanyaki chef or a restaurant that stacks magazines — is always appreciated.”
E-mail author: vidhibhargava @hindustantimes.com