Caterer ME interviews Ramez Khayyat about the Italian seafood concept at the Orient Pearl
Posted: Jun 29, 2014
1. What is the name of the Italian restaurant? Will this be changed after the menu theme change?
- Still I don’t have an exact answer. We’re still developing the concept."
2. Seating capacity in total?
- 350-2,300 seats"
3. Covers weekdays and weekends?
- Week Days from 100 to 200 / Week ends from 200 to 300"
4. Why have you decided to change the theme of the restaurant just 6-7 months in?
- This is a normal action. After the opening of any restaurant you should conduct what we call menu engineering to evaluate the menu and to know the bestselling items and to do modifications on the menu or to change the concept if this is applicable."
5. Why do you think the local residents don't have knowledge about Italian cuisine?
- Due to the market expansion we don’t see too many Italian restaurants in Qatar and the residents have more of an appetite for pizza and pasta dishes, which isn’t ‘traditional’ Italian cuisine."
6. Will the entire menu be revamped; who is carrying out the revamp (name of chef)?
- This is still under process and off course the executive chef will be involved and there will be certain consultancy concerning the new concept, but up until now it is not very clear."
7. Why do you think it will be better to change the theme/menu rather than educate the diners about Italian cuisine?
- Due to the capacity of the restaurant the breakeven is very high and small Italian operations cannot cover the cost, thus if the restaurant was with a capacity of 100 seats maybe we will work better on the Italian concept."
8. Is the restaurant going to be serving local fish or imported fish, or both?
- Both the local and the imported fish will stick to the chefs recipes and menu concept.
Mohamad Moataz Alkhayat is the owner and manager of 14 companies in the Middle East, including countries such as Qatar, Syria and Morocco. He knows about facing challenges in the business world but more importantly, he knows how to handle them professionally and grab opportunities.
As a proven leader he has founded and grown companies that specialize in commercial and residential construction development, construction materials, interior design and facilities. Aside from his construction and interiors businesses, he is also a restaurateur and owner of Damasca One in Damascus and the Orient Pearl, the largest single restaurant venue in Doha, Qatar.
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Moataz Al Khayat is the author of this article about the Italian seafood concept at the Orient Pearl. Find more information here: http://moatazalkhayat.com/