It’s a dog’s world

Canine fine dining is fast gaining popularity with pooch lovers splurging for their four footed friends. Join in!

Canine fine dining is fast gaining popularity with pooch lovers splurging for their four footed friends. Join in!

It is a dog’s world.

When national award-winning Chef Varun Inamdar conceptualised India’s first ever fine dining canine dinner, Bone Appetit, at The Westin Mumbai Powaii Lake in Mumbai over two days last month, he had the furries eating out of his hands, literally.

“These little fur balls give birth to the pet chef in me,” says Chef Varun. “I have been (preparing pet meals) – doing it off record for a lot of my friends, but this is the first of its kind in all ways, grand and immaculate. The bowls were polished off within seconds of service by the munchkins.” With reason enough, the OTT menu brought in a lavish sit down four-course meal with gourmet specials for the four-legged attendees. Locally sourced, organic, nutritious dishes, bereft of additives and preservatives, the amuse bouche of Turkey Cotelettes brought in turkey cranberry nuggets served on coconut-oil spritzed shavings of sweet potatoes, baby zucchini and carrots, the Ultimate Grin Bowls of chicken tenders, toasted nori and sardines and watermelon popsicles; Dogizzas with chicken breast in hearty bone broth and chicken liver; together with personalised doggy bags full of toys and treats to take home and a hand written note by Chef Varun. Live caricatures of pets and their parents added to the charm of the meal.

Canine fine dining has been a celebrated affair in the US for years and is fast gaining popularity in India. Some restaurants are bringing in customised canine birthday cakes and entrees of steaks and vegetables for wagging tails. The traditional dog bone has been long elbowed aside by curious shapes in dog pastries, and non-alcoholic ‘beer’ made of pork broth, lapped up best with salmon strips. Talk about wooing the discerning doggos with a super woof as OTC pet food has made way for super stuff in the bowl that goes beyond the bone-shaped dog biscuit slathered with peanut butter.

Think pawsome sundowners. Recently Acre Bangalore came up with a barking good gathering with special prizes for best groomed tails, and Easter Egg hunt for furries too. The post pandemic mushrooming of cafes and eateries pan India has brought in an additional revenue for restaurants in pet menus. Stroll into al fresco areas of certain restaurants and cafes with your four-legged friends, curl up with the cats and read a book –  while sipping your almond matcha latte at Veronica’s café in Mumbai. “We have no objection to hosting pets if customers have no objection,” says Sameer Seth, owner, Veronica’s. Or walk into pet cafes and bistros where you can attend workshops with your furries and the first portion of pet food is free. Doolally Taproom in Mumbai hosts an annual ‘Pupper Party’ on National Dog Day – a ​​social mixer for pet parents to connect with pooches from all around the city.

From a dedicated zone for pets to special serveware for pooches, it is certainly a pawsome time to be a pet.

Shilpi Madan for Deccan Herald

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