GourmetItUp, a culinary web portal and online concierge service that started operations in Mumbai, is now ready to take on a new challenge by expanding to neighbouring Pune after only a year-long stint in the industry. Partners Kunal Jain and Deepa Jain at GourmetItUp.com reveal their plans for the portal.
Pune has a passionate young urban dining community as well as a ground breaking restaurant industry, a perfect combination for GourmetItUp. The city has a new breed of diners. Though a much smaller city compared to Mumbai, Pune makes up for its size with its cultural and culinary charm. Known as the “Oxford of the East” because of its educational heritage, Pune is fast becoming one of India’s top technology hubs. Its thriving economy coupled with its own tourist gems and a dynamic gastronomic scene has put Pune on the culinary map.
The city is home to an eclectic crowd of foodies and the city’s offerings range from Western favorites to. Students, migrants and IT professionals help drive the local food industry. Pune residents are known to be passionate about their leisure activities including clubbing and dining out, and the cultural capital of Maharashtra has an extremely sophisticated restaurant and bar scene that can actually give Mumbai a run for its money. From hole-in-the-wall bars and roadside eateries to fine dining hubs, there is no shortage of food choices in the city.
Pune is like a mini-Mumbai except it’s a bit more relaxed. Online, people are raving about it. With so many culinary options, it’s definitely going to be a challenge for us to offer something truly unique to such a sophisticated crowd of diners so as early as now, we’re doing a lot of research. We are taking the learnings gathered from the last year’s operations in our base city Mumbai, combining them with research and surveys of restaurateurs in Pune to make sure we create experiences that are great for diners as well as restaurants.
Which restaurants have you already tapped in Pune?
We have tapped some of the city’s finest dining destinations such as Euriska, Darios, Malaka Spice, Harajuku (O Hotels), Mainland China and Punjab Grill as launch partners to create an exclusive range of delightful experiences for casual diners and passionate foodies.
What was the thought behind GourmetItUp?
GourmetItUp has been synonymous with creating unique and exclusive dining experiences for its members, from off-menu meals and wine pairings to mixology and master classes. It was a response to evolving culinary tastes and preferences. Diners craved new cuisines to discover and new ways to enjoy good food especially in a city teeming with diversity. GourmetItUp was born from the constant frustration that we experienced due to the lack of new and interesting things to do in the city. We didn’t really find value in going out just for something to eat. This feeling was shared by a majority of consumers we surveyed. This made us decide to create a resource that would enable consumers to always gain access to new culinary experiences in the city.
What does the portal offer?
It’s not just about culinary delights. GourmetItUp is also about that tailor-fit service and that extra mile when dining out. We help our members in making reservations and arranging special meals as needed. Currently, we have teamed up with atleast 40 of Mumbai’s top restaurants including favourites like Two One Two Bar & Grill, Yautcha, Hakkasan and Indigo. We have a spectacular member base from connoisseurs to beginners, who are all brought together by the shared desire for good food. In fact, it’s a growing list of partners. There’s always something new to eat and experience, and it’s our job to be on the lookout for such discoveries.