Kaveri restaurant in Ranchi on Friday. Picture by Prashant Mitra
Foodies of Ranchi, eat your heart out. Festive burps are going to burn a hole in the pocket this year.
Foodies are discovering that many big and prominent joints dotting the capital have revised their prices by a minimum of five to 15 per cent. The culprit — the soaring prices of essential commodities such as flour, oil, sugar and milk, among others — has caused menu cards across eateries to flaunt new figures.
Kaveri Restaurant at Circular Road has revised its prices just a couple of days before the festive rush. “The new menu cards will come in a day’s time. Our lunch, dinner and sweets have new rates. We are telling customers before they place their order about the new prices, so that there’s no dissatisfaction when they get the bill,” said manager Jamuna Singh.
The rates are up by Rs 2 or Rs 5 on all items, right from coolers, ice creams, breakfast snacks and main courses. For instance, a normal dosa comes for Rs 48 in place of Rs 45 and baby corn chowmein will cost Rs 85 in place of Rs 80.
At first glance it looks modest enough, but the cost piles up when families dine in large groups.
Popular hangout Jalajoga at Albert Ekka Chowk has revised its rates differently for its air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned segments.
Sudhir Kumar, managing the bill counter, maintained they had increased their rates across all items from Rs 5-Rs 10. “It’s only natural for us to increase rates due to inflation. Moreover, during Puja we employ additional staff, make extra seating arrangements and decorations to attract more customers. It’s the best time to rework our pricing,” said he.
On the new rates, he said: “Fish items are popular here. If you sit in the ground floor without AC, a plate of fish curry will cost Rs 57, which earlier was Rs 50. Upstairs, with the AC, it will cost Rs 70, up by Rs 10,”
Anand Vatika at Circular road is mulling five and 10 per cent hikes on vegetarian and non-vegetarian items.
“We have sent our new menu for printing,” said owner Kamaljeet Singh.
Meanwhile, it’s also a bitter season for those with a sweet tooth.
Milk prices will rise between Rs 2 or Rs 3, while sugar has gone up from Rs 32 to Rs 35 or more at present.
This hike has compelled eateries to revise the price of perennial favourites such as rasgulla and rasmalai.
“A big rasgulla costs Rs 12 and a cup of rasmalai Rs 20, all up by Rs 2,” said a shopkeeper.
One of the capital’s oldest sweet shop established in 1947, Punjab Sweet House at Main Road, has not increased rates before Puja, but will do so immediately afterwards. “It’s the policy of our establishment that we don’t increase rates during the festive season. But we will do it after Puja,” said owner K.G. Bhatia.