TKI unveils new Sudan food concept
Dubai, January 21, 2011
Thomas Klein International (TKI), the Dubai-based food and beverage consultants, said it plans to develop a unique food and beverage concept that will recreate traditional Sudanese cuisine at the new El Seref project based in Khartoum.
The food and beverage concept was designed after scouring the country to learn about traditional cooking methods, recipes and ingredients, said a senior official.
“We had to learn a lot about Sudanese cooking, and after many excursions to back streets, rural and urban settings, we found a truly wonderful and ‘undiscovered’ cuisine coupled by ingenious cooking methods that people had passed down for millennia,” said Daniel During, managing partner of TKI.
“There is a lot of emphasis on rich smoky charcoal flavours and fresh herbs, and we really wanted to showcase Sudanese traditions in a way that would make the Sudanese proud of what their land has to offer,' he remarked.
'Most of all, we were inspired to create a place that would appeal to Sudanese families – men and women – and foreigners alike,' he added.
TKI worked with several local and international companies to develop modern ways of replicating the ancient Sudanese cooking methods while meeting modern standards of food quality, hygiene and safety.
El Seref will have its own on-site slaughterhouse and butchery, as well as a fishmonger. Local breads will be baked on site, and most vegetables and herbs will be sourced in Sudan, said the official.
According to him, the main focus was to create a buzzing, dynamic food hall/market concept, rich in sights and sounds, that truly celebrates the native cooking of Sudan.
'The project will feature a selection of 28 different food stalls, including a spice market, vegetable market, a deli with olives and cheeses, a bakery, and a pastry shop,' said During.
The building, comprising a 15 metre high glass-walled structure, sits majestically on a prime location on the riverbed of an historical site on the Nile in Omdurman, 200 meters from the confluence of the White and Blue Nile. At 35,000 sq ft in size, El Seref is the largest independent food and beverage operation in Sudan.
Adjacent to El Seref are mud fortresses that were built in the 1890’s and used as a last point of resistance against heavily armed British forces.
This area around the site will also be developed as a joint venture of El Seref Tourism and hospitality and the Sudan’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, he added.
Abdel Rahim El Sadig, the general manager of El Seref Tourism and Hospitality, said “We decided to restore the mud structures and will also bring in the two British warships that spearheaded the invasion - El Malik (the King) and El Bordeen.”
'One ship will be placed on the riverside and one will be moored in the Nile. The site will also contain a small museum to showcase some of the weapons and tools of the time.'
'A small outdoor theatre will create a panorama that will highlight the historic battle, and the gardens will be re-landscaped and a link will be made from both fortresses to the El Seref market,” El Sadig added.
The project, due to open early next year, is owned and managed by El Seref Tourism and Hospitality, and the total investment inclusive of interiors and kitchen fit-out is estimated at $8 million.-TradeArabia News Service