Iftar, Sehri parties drive biz in city restaurants

Dhaka,  Tue,  22 August 2017
Published : 15 Jun 2017, 22:24:17

Iftar, Sehri parties drive biz in city restaurants

Adnan Hossain Bhuiyan

Like Iftar parties in the holy month of Ramadan, a section of city dwellers is now crowding different restaurants to have Sehri too with friends and family members.

The two events during Ramadan are no more a household affair for many.

Several areas, especially rich with eateries in the city's Old Dhaka, Khilgaon, Bailey Road, Gulshan, Banani, and 300 Feet Road beside Bashundhara residential area, are buzzing with people during both Iftar and Sehri.

Restaurant owners said the crowd to eat Iftar and Sehri in food shops has been rising every year since 2010 as outlets all across the city have emerged during this time to serve food of diverse tastes and ranges.

However, they also said the trend of arranging Sehri parties in the city's posh areas haven't been encouraging this year amid security concerns.

Restaurants in old part of Dhaka, however, are witnessing brisk business in this month of Ramadan.

Imran Ahmed, a university student who went to eat Sehri with his three friends at Hotel Al-Razzaque in the city's North South Road at Bangshal, told the FE, "There is only a few hours' gap between dinner and Sehri time in this year's Ramadan. So, I sleep in most of nights after eating Sehri."

"Like me, a number of my friends do not sleep before Sehri. This actually allows us to come out of our homes to meet there for eating Sehri together", he added.

However, restaurants in the city have also come up with appealing offers both for Iftar and Sehri, he added.

Hotel Al-Razzaque offers three sets of menus that serve usual rice and daal, Kacchi Biriyani or Chicken Biriyani with mutton glassy costing around Tk 350 to Tk 500 per person.

Apart from Al-Razzaque, restaurants in Nazimuddin Road and Chowk Bazar like Nanna Biriyani, Mamun Biriyani, Royal Restaurant, Hajir Biriyani, and Bismillah Kabab also become crowded after 01:00am and remain packed till call for Fazr prayers.

Visiting Khilgaon Taltola area at around 03:00am  early Monday, this correspondent found several hundred youths, mostly aged between 18 to 25 years, coming in small groups and were entering different restaurants for eating Sehri in the area.

A new couple, Reza and Tonima, flanked with some other friends, came to the area riding their car quite early before the Sehri time to have some extra minutes for gossiping about their lives and events.

Tonima said, "It's our first Ramadan together after the wedding and we haven't met our friends earlier."

Usually, it is not that easy to hang out with friends in the middle of night and eat quality food, but the month of Ramadan comes with opportunity to have Sehri parties in the city past midnight, added Reza.

However, families with babies and elderly also come and enjoy Sehri in numerous restaurants scattered throughout the city.

Tune & Bite Music Café in Khilgaon serves five platters during Iftar of which unlimited pizza at Tk 699 attract the people most. The outlet also offers Sehri dishes Thursday and Friday night.

Khilgaon Taltola and adjacent area house over 150 eateries that have come up with numerous alternative foods for Iftar and Sehri items that mostly draw middle class crowd.

Star Kabab with its 11 branches has become a major Iftar and Sehri destination for city people. Mohammad Monwar, manager of its Dhanmondi branch told the FE that many people including corporate organisations book tables at the restaurant long before Ramadan starts, for both Sehri and Iftar parties.

Besides the trendy Sehri parties, all restaurants in the capital offer wide variety of foods during Iftar.

Premises of different public-private universities, especially Teacher-Student Centre (TSC) of Dhaka University, New Market, Dhanmondi Lake and Shahbagh area, attract many people to reunite with friends ahead of breaking their fast.

Editor : A.H.M Moazzem Hossain
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