CHEERS… Mocktail lovers! You can now enjoy taste bud stimulating and high-quality mocktails and food menu at The Shack. Located at Duncan Basti, Dimapur, The Shack is a small café which offers their very own signature, authentic mocktails and of course, some of the very famous mocktails including Blue Lagoon Curacao and Frappucino.
“It is a family friendly café with a bar experience minus the alcohol,” defines the owner, Yanger Jamir when asked about his café. “I always wanted to venture out into the restaurant business; It was always close to my heart,” he states. Yanger Jamir is also a professional photographer and runs the Cine-Scope Studio which is located next to the café.
Opened just a month back, The Shack has already found guest traffic from its family and friends as well as those who are walking through, but before one set expectations of a astounding place, it is usually the case that good quality food comes from scanty spots that spend their time in making good food and beverages, not beautifying their restaurants.
Inside, there is a bar that is well stocked and on the wall hung the picture frames showcasing some of Yanger’s photography works done in the past.
“It is a mocktail café. We don’t keep conventional drinks which are available in most of the outlets and along with that we offer food items like hotdogs, burgers, fried rice, chicken and pork barbecue recipes,” shares the owner. To spice it up a notch they have come up with their own signature style mocktail recipes.
The bartender, who works at the café, has experience of working at a restaurant in Delhi. The café has narrowed down the items to around 15 drinks and are planning to keep at least 30 different mocktails by the end of this month.
“Some of the mocktails we keep are very popular ones but most of them we came up with our own recipe. I think it will take about a month to fully update the mocktail menu,” Yanger added.
The Shack takes pride in their ingredients. As Yanger states, “we use very expensive essence and other ingredients so our drinks have a better taste and even the color is brighter and more vibrant.” This is another reason why even their burger patty is made in-house. The Shack’s core value is to do right with a “less is more” attitude when it comes to showcasing the food and mocktail flavors.
“Frappuccino, Triple Rain, Blue Lagoon Curacao (swimming pool), Chocó cocoa cold war and electric shock” are some of the most popular drink in the house.
On a personal account, Yanger mentions that juggling two jobs can be a real hassle and way too many responsibilities to keep track of, “it is pretty hard to find a balance between fulfilling your commitments to those jobs and maintaining your own personal time.”
Balancing two completely different professions can be sometimes too much to handle for one single person. However, Yanger has found a balance between the two and it makes everything so much easier.
“Photography and videography are mostly seasonal. Whenever I do a photography project, the post-production takes time and it stretches for a month so mostly I work from my house and sometimes from the office. But unless it is in the peak season, it is not that difficult to manage both the studio and the café. And regarding the café, all the staff is very sincere and they are the ones with the working experience so I don’t worry much,” he said.
“I’m planning to expand the café wherein I can have a photography gallery and a digital frame area where people can browse through my photography works and also renovate the café in a way to create an ambience suitable for all ages to have a good time,” the aspiring entrepreneur shares.
Yanger also expresses that starting a restaurant is exciting, it is also time-consuming and one of the toughest businesses to successfully launch. With many cafés and restaurants in every nook and corner, the competition is higher and Yanger believes that “If you want to start a business of any kind, I think we should be very price sensitive.”
“While determining the price of the products it is important to offer customers a reasonable price but you should never compromise on the quality of the product,” he added.
Rongseninla Walling, a post graduate in the Public Relations, Advertising and Marketing, YMCA New Delhi is currently an intern in The Morung Express.