Pooja Patel

Akriti Agarwal, CEO, Thirsty Enterprises, Thirsty Beers & Thirsty Restaurants & Bars, is a young businesswoman who has made a name for herself in the F&B industry and finds it surreal to have operated and survived in such a challenging market.
The young entrepreneur talks about what’s keeping her busy these days.

What have you been cooking while locked in at home?
I’ve been cooking and baking a lot! I made pasta and risotto, cakes, puff pastry and some traditional food during Navratra. Baking and cooking can really take up a lot of time if you are making everything from scratch. I have been making egg dishes that are super easy and healthy as well.
Agarwal baked a chocolate cake with fresh strawberries and dark chocolate ganache
Have you tried making drinks at home?
Yes, lots! I brought some experiments home from the bar. I made pineapple tepache, watermelon wine and regular G&T with whatever herbs I had at home.
Homemade watermelon wine
Once the lockdown is called off, where would you like to go and eat?
First things first, I’ll go to Thirsty City 127 and have a few of my favourites, feel at home and then step out. In Mumbai, I would love to go back to Masque and a couple of other favourites in Bandra. I will also try the new outlets that had just opened before the lockdown was announced. In Delhi, I will go to Hoots for a drink and to Artusi and Comorin for food. Also, Sazerac and Jamun!
Read: Akriti Agarwal’s journey in the spirits industry.
Akriti Agarwal
What are you reading these days?
I have almost finished reading Contagious: Why Things Catch On by Jonah Berger. I am also reading Early Indians: The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From by Tony Joseph and have Taste Matters: Why We Like the Foods We Like by John Prescott.
Which Netflix series have you enjoyed watching the most?
There’s so much out there! I watched SHE, Money Heist and a few others.
Are you pursuing any hobbies?
Reading, cooking, baking and playing lots of chess. I love to paint and draw, but didn’t stock up on enough material, so I can’t paint or sketch now.
Spaghetti in roasted tomato and red pepper sauce made from scratch by Akriti
What is your message for our readers?
Be patient. It’s tough for everyone. Decisions and plans can only be made once normalcy returns—whenever that is. And also, no one’s judging.
What is the the first thing you will do after travel restrictions are lifted?
I will head to Thirsty City 127 in Mumbai and meet my best friend and family.
Thirsty City 127
How do you think luxury consumption in India and the world will change?
Everything will change, from purchasing power to consumption patterns. Luxury will become unattainable by the masses and will become accessible only to the elite. The gap that already existed will widen owing to the mass unemployment and pay cuts. We will need a strong economy package to maintain a balance.
Please share your favourite recipe that can be easily and quickly made.
Roasted Tomato and Pepper Sauce— this one’s a favourite as the sauce can be stored and used with anything.
Ingredients:
Small red tomatoes
Onions
Red pepper (I threw in a yellow one as well as I had it at home)
Garlic
Salt
Pepper
Any herb you may have (I used parsley)
Dried red chilli (if you want more chilli, use a dash of Tabasco as well)
Olive oil
Method:
Roast the tomatoes and pepper with some olive oil and salt (can be done in an oven or on the stove).
Toast the red chilli with garlic in some olive oil on medium heat.
Add chopped onions and cook till translucent.
Add the roasted tomatoes and peppers and cook till everything is mixed, but not burnt or overcooked.
Add salt, pepper and herbs and blend together in a mixer.
Add a bit of olive oil if it is too dry.
This creamy red paste/sauce can be used to make pasta or literally anything.

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