Table Talk: NOVU

Published: May 11, 2019
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Specialising in authentic Pan Asian cuisine, NOVU offers a calm, contemporary ambiance that is suitable for corporate lunches and family dinners. From soups and salads to seafood and beef/chicken dishes, the diverse menu is carefully crafted to cater to everyone’s needs. We catch up with team NOVU to talk about their metier, vision, and specialities served at the restaurant

What was your vision behind opening NOVU?

After traditional cuisine, Pan Asian cuisine has a lot of potential in Pakistan. Our vision was to provide quality food in a contemporary environment.

What is the process of developing a new menu or new dishes at NOVU?

We believe our team has good taste and exposure which translates into value additions in the menu.

What can guests expect when they eat at your restaurant?

They can expect good quality food at economical prices and a great dining experience. Our Japanese menu has just kicked in and is doing great.

How is NOVU’s menu different from what other restaurants are offering?

We have a limited yet comprehensive menu ranging from soups and appetisers to main entrees but the quality of our food is exceptional and easy on pocket. Apart from that, we believe the ambiance and the whole dining experience is something that sets us apart from other restaurants.

How has Pakistan changed in terms of spending and eating out?

In our opinion, social and digital media has given great impetus to people’s spending and eating trends. It has significantly evolved over the last few years.

What are some of the specialties at NOVU?

NOVU Special Soup, Dynamite Prawns, Crunchy Maki, NOVU Special Chicken, Crunchy Honey Beef and Juha Fish are few of our specialities. Our garlic rice is a must. Recently, we added Beef Teriyaki Rolls and Lemongrass Fish on our menu which is another house favourite.

What has been your worst kitchen nightmare?

Shortage of Sole fish in the last few months was worrisome; however, we managed to procure at the end. Overall, our kitchen and kitchen staff is great.

Three ingredients you can’t live without?

Thai bird chilli, chicken powder and oyster sauce.

In your opinion, what differentiates Lahore and Karachi in terms of taste and food choice?

Karachi is a commercial hub and the largest city of Pakistan in terms of population and hosting different communities. Thus, Karachi offers a great variety of food. However, Lahoris are lively people who try and appreciate almost every new cuisine or dish introduced in the market- if it is prepared up to the mark.

What trends do you see shaping the food and beverage market this year?

The food festivals for instance, Coke Fest, Lahore Eat and 7up Eat have given new stimulus to the food and beverage industry. It gives many restaurants and home based eateries a chance to display their offerings to a large audience.

What do you consider to be the most underrated dish?

We could never understand why donner places failed in Lahore, while shawarmas on the other hand are doing amazing. Donner meat is such a universal dish and is loved all over the globe but somehow all the good places in Lahore eventually shut down.

What are some of the challenges of being a restaurateur?

Hospitality is fascinating and challenging at the same time. Of course you gather praise for putting out good food but one unintentional mistake is enough to greatly affect your reputation. We believe it is a continuous learning process. Continuous involvement is required for smooth functioning of a restaurant business.

What is in store for NOVU in the future?

We are working on a few dishes that we’ll be revealing soon. Hopefully they would live up to the customers’ expectations.

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