Downtown

This is out-of-the-red-box thinking

One of the three Red Box takeaway and delivery kiosks in the city.

One of the three Red Box takeaway and delivery kiosks in the city.  

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Can Chinese food containers inspire a food business? It can, says DAKSHIANI PALICHA

When Vaibhav Kumaravel would watch English films like Rush Hour, one thing that would always catch his attention was the food that the actors ate onscreen. Or, more specifically, the food containers. “The containers of Chinese food we see in movies look sturdy and easy-to-carry. When I realised the containers were biodegradable too, I thought this is a concept I definitely want to introduce in Chennai,” says Vaibhav.

Thus was born the Red Box, a Chinese takeaway and delivery kiosk. “I think Chinese cuisine is suitable for an occasion and even when there is no occasion,” he says.

Launched eight months ago, Red Box’s three branches are located in Nungambakkam, Alwarpet and Mogappair. The kiosk itself is designed to resemble a large Chinese takeaway box, coloured red. The orders can be placed on the spot, over the phone and even online.

Red Box’s menu is simple. It consists of the classic Chinese favourites, fried rice and noodles, in one different flavour every day with one accompaniment each for vegetarian and non-vegetarian food. One also gets an assortment of momos.

Ananth Raman, who manages the day-to-day operations of the three branches, says: “Chinese food is not easy to prepare and can be time-consuming, so keeping the menu short and simple was the practical choice. That way, we could focus more on delivery,” he says.

The choices offered on Wednesdays and Thursdays have turned out to be popular. “Sometimes, we get a request for a dish which is on the menu, but not available on that particular day. We do deliver, but there might be a little delay in delivery,” says Ananth.

Ananth and Vaibhav are ecstatic with the response to their enterprise, especially the Nungambakkam branch. “We supply to almost 80 per cent of the businesses in localities around Nungambakkam on a daily basis, and the online orders have picked up as well,” says Ananth.

For the immediate future, Vaibhav is looking to open new branches and expand the menu as well. “Our choices are limited, but we are hoping to add appetizers and soups to our menu,” he says.

For details, call 89390 00794

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2019 11:36:04 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/downtown/This-is-out-of-the-red-box-thinking/article14630808.ece

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