As the co-founder and CEO of Grit Hospitality, Anwar Awad has transformed his passion into reality, leading restaurant concepts like Wise Guys and Tahini. Here, we learn more about his businesses and what’s next.
What can you tell us about your company?
Grit Hospitality was founded in 2021 with the aim of redefining dining experiences. We began our journey with Smashed Burgers. Subsequently, we introduced WiseGuys, an authentic, retro NYC deli, offering Dubai some of the finest gourmet sandwiches in town. Our company is focused on providing every guest with exceptional dishes. We then opened Tahini, an eatery tucked away in One Central, offering authentic Levantine cuisine with a modern twist. Dedicated to exceptional service, our team crafts enduring memories and fosters valuable relationships through continuous innovation and evolution in hospitality. Therefore, we believe we distinguish ourselves through meticulous attention to detail and design.
What is the secret to creating trendy and successful concepts?
At GRIT Hospitality, we believe success in trendy concepts lies in meticulous development and execution, ensuring each idea flourishes authentically. This begins with conducting in-depth market analysis and leveraging data-driven insights to identify gaps and trends. Embracing AI for predictive analytics and customer feedback analysis refines our concept, keeping us ahead with innovative offerings in hospitality.
Incorporating culinary innovation and experimenting with flavors, techniques and ingredients contribute to crafting a unique culinary identity for memorable experiences. We prioritize operational efficiency through kitchen automation and supply-chain optimization, ensuring consistency and quality in our services and offerings. We employ targeted digital marketing strategies and collaborate with local influencers to ensure maximum visibility. Furthermore, organic customer feedback refines our offerings and concepts seamlessly.
Alongside a strong brand identity and sustainability practices, these factors position us at the forefront of the restaurant industry.
What F&B trends are you anticipating this year and how are you taking them into account in your businesses?
As a passionate restaurant lover and CEO, I’m keeping a keen eye on the F&B industry trends this year. Sustainability remains a top priority. Thus, we’re intensifying our efforts to source local, organic ingredients and reduce our carbon footprint. Furthermore, embracing plant-based and vegan options is a natural progression. We aim to cater to a wider range of tastes and dietary choices and closely monitoring the growth of experiential dining. Our ambience is being enhanced by introducing interactive elements to create memorable moments for our guests. The key is to strike a balance between innovation and preserving the essence of our culinary identity.
Local sourcing and food waste are becoming of greater concern. How is your group embracing the sustainability movement?
Sustainability is central to our restaurant group’s ethos. We’ve wholeheartedly embraced local sourcing, forging partnerships with local farms and suppliers to showcase the freshest, seasonal ingredients. This not only supports our local community but also reduces our carbon footprint. To combat food waste, we employ nose-to-tail cooking and daily specials, creatively utilizing surplus ingredients for sustainable kitchen practices. We’ve also adopted eco-friendly packaging and recycling initiatives to minimize our environmental impact. Sustainability isn’t just a trend for us; we are committed to preserving the planet while delivering exceptional dining experiences to our guests.
Do you have any projects in the pipeline?
We’ve recently unveiled Moonshine, our enchanting speakeasy bar in the heart of DIFC. We’re also expanding WiseGuys with multiple locations across the UAE, Riyadh, London and Paris. Stay tuned for these exciting developments!