NASHVILLE— Kathleen Ervin moved here 12 years ago from the Northeast, drawn to the relaxed atmosphere, green parks and relatively low cost of living.But in the past five years, her commute time
QA Restaurateur And Celebrity Chef Maneet Chauhan
NAWBO Business University is hosting its second lunch-n-learn for women business owners today, with celebrity chef/restaurateur — and part-time Nashvillian — Maneet Chauhan to speak at the event.
Post Managing Editor William Williams caught up with the self-described NashYorker to gauge her thoughts of the city’s fast-changing food and beverage scene.
You have done so much in Nashville in such a relatively brief time period. What has been your strategy regarding this?
It’s our goal to work hard and keep going for what time and energy allows every single day to bring the best culinary ideas and experiences to Nashville. The idea of Nashville growing culinary and otherwise is so exciting for me and our team at Chauhan as a whole. It is even more motivating to bring these culinary concepts to Nashville only to enhance the living and dining experience of the community, as well as showing tourists where Nashville is today versus five years ago.
On this theme, you have two new restaurant concepts. One will be located within the space once occupied by Pub of Love and next to Chauhan Ale & Masala House in the North Gulch. You have yet to announce concepts for either. What can you say?
There will be structural [updates] to accommodate the growth and redesign. Within the building, there will also be a private dining space for 70 people along with the two other concepts.
Chauhan Ale & Masala House will be two years in operation in November. How are things with the restaurant?
Things are as busy, as crazy and as amazing as they could possibly be. To be honest, we never expected to be so welcomed by both Nashvillians and tourists. The whole experience and feedback has been overwhelming, which motivates us to be on our toes and make sure that every night we provide the best possible experience to each and every guest. I have always valued the sense of community, giving back to the place we live and the community that supports us, so we make sure that is a goal of the restaurant throughout the year.
You and Derrick Morse have Mantra Artisan Ales in full swing in Franklin. Your beers are now available on tap in Chattanooga and you will soon offer packaged product (in bottles) in retail stores in March. Your thoughts?
We’re very excited to launch our products in the retail market in March. This is something we’ve been working hard to accomplish for months and we have a brilliant designer creating our labels. Personally, I feel like the packaging is unique and unlike any other beers on the market. They reflect the artistic brewmaster that we have in Derrick Morse and the globally inspired beers.
You recently brought chef Aatul Jain to oversee the Chauhan Ale and Masala House menu. He will also likely shape the menus of the two eateries you are targeting. How is this progressing?
We couldn’t be more excited to have Chef Aatul Jain come in with his vast experience and superior knowledge when it comes to cuisine as a whole. It’s going really well and the synergy is immaculate. We have already seen some positive changes, including soon-to-be-introduced menu changes. Also, he will play a major role in how the other two concepts, and the restaurant group as a whole, will continue to grow.
You and three investors acquired for $9.5 million an Eighth Avenue property last September. What is the plan?
It's an investment and when the right time comes all the partners will make a collective decision.
What are your thoughts about how local chefs and restaurant owners have been garnering national media attention?
It’s great to see Nashville in the spotlight for the diversity it brings in the culinary scene and the community to the city. The chefs and Nashville restaurants are offering cuisine at a very high level. The restaurants we have here are good enough to stand their ground in the national food scene and draw attention from top publications nationwide. That’s something to be proud of as a group.
How much time do you spend in New York City and in Nashville and how does that work?
I like to call myself a "NashYorker." Franklin has become our home for my family, but I still travel to New York City regularly to shoot Chopped. Otherwise, I am in Nashville as much as possible.
Later today, you will participate in a NAWBO Business University luncheon. What can you say?
I’m so excited to be getting to spend some time with some exceptional women. I hope to draw inspiration, ideas and courage from them.
AUTHORS William Williams - NashvillePost.com
Being a REALTOR® is my passion. I truly love helping people buy and sell real estate. It is so rewarding to see the joy I bring to my clients when they buy their dream home or sell an amazingly reno....
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