Neelesh Bhatnagar, Owner & CEO, JSB Restaurants Image Credit: Supplied

What makes The Yellow Chilli by Sanjeev Kapoor stand out in the UAE’s crowded dining scene?

The Yellow Chilli is the only Indian casual dining restaurant concept where the entire menu is created and designed by celebrity chef Sanjeev Kapoor. He has brought in his personal experiences alive with his signature dishes making us stand out from the competition. This, along with the personalised customer service and experience we offer across outlets, helps us maintain an edge in the market.

What are some of the must-try dishes on the menu?

Our signature main course dishes include the popular Shaam Savera and Lalla Mussa Dal for vegetarians, and Dilliwala Butter Chicken and Tawa Ghost for non-vegetarians. For starters, we highly recommend the Fennel Lasooni Murgh and the Mutton Bura Boti with Garlic Pepper Sauce. We have a wide range of biryanis to choose from — our Chicken Tikka Biryani is the top seller. Our mocktails such as Masala Mint Cooler and Anar Dana and signature desserts such as Motichoor Panjari Tart with Rabdi Mousse, are extremely popular with our regular customers

How have you modified the recipes to suit the palate of diners in the UAE?

We have been conscious of the emerging tastes and demands of food lovers in the UAE and use the freshest and best of ingredients for all our dishes. We are constantly listening to our customers across touchpoints and also cater to the health conscious millennials by ensuring our portions are just right. We continue to evolve our menu and will soon be introducing breakfast and evening snacks to cater to the growing demand of the working and constantly mobile population.

The restaurant industry has not been immune to pandemic challenges. How have you adapted to these difficulties?

With the dine-in business being affected directly by the pandemic, we successfully launched our brands The Yellow Chilli, Pressman’s Pressed Sandwiches, Hong Kong and Booster Juice online across leading delivery platforms. We also launched our cloud kitchen brand, Biryani Box, a year ago which serves the choicest of biryanis and kebabs in attractive packaging at an affordable price across the UAE.

We are now on the verge of launching the first ever branded Khichdis — Khichdi Tales — which will bring over 25 varieties of khichdis from all over India. Overall, we have managed our costs and talent very carefully and haven’t closed any outlets. We are now looking at expanding our brands in new locations.