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Delhi’s first tap beer café has a few entrepreneurial lessons for you. Read on
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Delhi’s first tap beer café has a few entrepreneurial lessons for you. Read on

As we walk through the huge door of Smoke on Water, Connaught Place's new offering, tap-your-beer gastro pub, we are greeted with a radiant ambiance with loud rock music playing in the background. A series of video screens fit well into the frame of the cafe, making it a perfect destination for sports lovers in town. ( Also Read: ​Pay Only For The 'Exact' Amount Of Alcohol You Gulp Down At Delhi's First Tap-Beer Gastropub)

Intrigued by the name of the cafe, we asked Mayur Mathur, owner, if he was a fan of rock band Deep Purple, who released a song by the same name in their 1972 album Machine Head. Mayur nodded in affirmative saying "I wanted to conceptualize a place where people could connect to rock music as there are only a handful of rock music themed cafes in the town. And, I myself have always been a huge fan of rock music. So, I named the cafe on the first song I heard in the rock genre, Smoke on the water."

This newbie, situated in the cafe hub of the town, seems to stand out from its counterparts in the vicinity for its ablaze aura. Mayur, who conceptualized the interiors, feels, "People come back to a place for its aura and service. Anyone can copy the food, but the ambiance and service are something which can't be copied. That's why my main focus is to serve people well at my cafe.

The culture of dimly lit cafes is rampant these days. But, I didn't want a dark and dingy place. Instead, I wanted a place which is well-lit, a place where a customer feels comfortable to step in with his wife or family."

Mayur ideated profusely to make his cafe stand out from the rest of the lineup. He says "The variety and flavor of food, setting of tables, all are secondary when it comes to attracting people to your restaurant or cafe. To have a line of people standing outside the door of your cafe, you need to think out of the box.

Whether you are in the cafe business or you are up for a start-up plan, there are certain things which need to be taken care of apart from food, cost, and management."

So, how can you beat cut-throat competition in a place like CP, which is full of buzzing cafes and pubs ? (Also Read: 10 Bizarre Restaurants Around The World)

Decide a theme

If you wish to make your guests stay for a longer duration in your restaurant or afe, make sure you design it on the lines of a particular theme. From food, equipment, decor, lighting, and music, everything must be in accordance with the theme of the place. A good theme attracts more customers in comparison to any regular cafe as before diners smell or taste food, they go by the arrangement of the place. Unless you have something unusual to offer, you cannot expect money flowing into your pocket.


Will you be able to enjoy gourmet food in a cluttered dining arrangement? How will it feel to have many people dancing on your head while dining? Think it from the perspective of a diner. Plan a seating arrangement so that your customers do not feel cluttered or trapped. This does not mean that you decrease the capacity of your restaurant. Strike a balance between spacing and capacity of your outlet.


Lighting in a cafe sets the tone of a customer's mood while he dines out. So, it stands as an important part of a cafe's interior design. Whether you wish your cafe to be lit up or have dim lighting, make sure it goes with the set theme


Sound in a restaurant or cafe is not restricted to music. It includes chefs enjoying a good time in the kitchen, television or just people chatting in your cafe. It all depends on the atmosphere you wish to create for your guests. If it is an upbeat cafe, you can choose to play loud rock music and if you plan to come up with a romantic setting, go for soft romantic beats. The only motive is to make it stand out from the rest.


Hire a staff, capable of taking very good care of the customers. Think about a woman who serves food to her family with much love. Even she deserves to be served with love. Not only will a good treatment from waiters bring a smile on the faces of diners, but also it will help the cafe get a loyal following.


The name of your cafe must mirror the concept of your cafe. Do not go over the board to give it a distinctive name. It should be easy to pronounce and remember. Wake up your creative mind and think of a name that can define your vision to your customers.

Well, Smoke on Water does resonate the concept of the cafe very well. Head here to drink like a fish while enjoying some crazy rock music in the background.

(Also Read: Do Not Compromise On These 5 Areas In Your Business EVER!)

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