Food

Best bytes on street bites

Prasad Battu and Ravi Tej Ravuri

Prasad Battu and Ravi Tej Ravuri  

Ravi and Prasad chronicle Hyderabad’s street food on their YouTube channel

Here is the story of a weight loss video which eventually turned into a YouTube channel — Street Byte — featuring popular and lip-smacking street food of Hyderabad. Friends Prasad Battu and Ravi Tej Ravuri were blissfully happy with their respective corporate careers. Two and half years back Ravi was shooting his 15 kg weight loss saga. Weight loss is good but that process led them to think of an interesting way to discuss food. “Something like a food informative website, but nothing like the existing ones. We also didn’t want to end up doing reviews of eateries, star hotels. At the same time we didn’t want to be like a travel channel,” explains Ravi.With these guidelines for themselves, the two started working on a format. They were sure they wanted the channel meant for the common man without lacing it with anyone’s opinion. “Informative videos without background music, in the rustic working place was what we finally decided upon. Weight loss somehow lost focus and we started our food sojourn from the place where my weight loss videos had started. We shot Nani tiffins and their 15 varieties of dosa. This eatery at Ranigunj is old and has been dishing out these 15 varieties of dosas since ages,” explains Ravi.

After that video, they headed to Abids to shoot the popular bread-omelette adda. These videos earned them about 30-40 views in the beginning. Their professional commitments kept them busy and so their videos weren’t very frequent in the beginning. “Meanwhile a popular Telugu entertainment channel copied our format. Until then we were the only ones featuring street food in Hyderabad. As an independent YouTube channel Street Byte produced 310 food informative videos and have earned a viewership of more than 3.3 crore with a subscriber base of 1,02,000,” says Ravi who did his masters from Middlesex University in London.

Stree Byte’s video on the cooking process of the popular ₹ 5 midday meal by GHMC earned them close to 90 lakh views.

Ravi’s interest on an informative food channel was paved during his time in London when he chose e-commerce on street food as his dissertation project.

What makes Street Byte quite different from what one sees elsewhere is the presentation. For viewers, it is no different from watching it live at the bandis they shoot. That is why the two of them have decided to retain the raw footage format with real timeline background sound.

While it started as a Hyderabad street food channel, Street Byte in now spreading its wings to feature food across south India. The founders have begun their work and Ravi is travelling extensively to feature popular food joints in the neighbouring districts and states. “I have quit my job to be able to devote more time to the work. It is purely self-funded and passion-driven,” says Ravi.

At the moment Street Byte earns up to 1.2 lakh views a day and what started at 30 views sometimes touches 10 lakh views as well. A few of their popular videos include, Anjaneyulu Vilas, Subbaiya mess from Kakinada, Babai tiffin from Vijayawada, Guntur’s famous Subhani hotel and Kaushik Caterer’s Jackfruit biryani preparation.

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Printable version | Feb 23, 2020 5:58:23 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/food/best-bytes-on-street-bites/article20004288.ece

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