Cool Friends: Basu Ratnam
February 10, 2023
|Meet Basu, founder of fast-casual Indian restaurant, INDAY. With six locations between Manhattan and Brooklyn, Basu is quickly growing the business behind his mission to add joy and connection to daily life by celebrating the beauty and breadth of Indian cooking. We caught up with Basu to hear more about how INDAY got its start.|
How did you start your creative & casual Indian cooking restaurant, INDAY?
I grew up in a home surrounded by amazing food sourced locally and cooked in really innovative ways. I wanted to bring that to people in a way that felt accessible and fun. Indian food had a stigma attached to it. It still can be a polarizing cuisine. I wanted it to be more everyday and casual. I hired my friends to do the brand, and worked with scrappy designers to help us build the space. We ran out of money and used construction and acoustic materials for our finishes, but luckily we were busy from day 1 and the rest grew from there.
What's your favorite part about the New York creative community?
It's so diverse. Everyone who's here is at the top of their game. The people that have stayed long enough are real New Yorkers, because New York is a little bit like a washing machine, eventually it spits most people out. I heard once that what gives New York its energy is that everyone is running around trying to figure out what it means to be a New Yorker. I love that idea. We're all trying our best to fit into this city and leave our mark.
What's inspiring you right now?
Indian and Sri Lankan modernist design, Geoffrey Bawa and Bijoy Jain. Simplicity but emotion, fusing new and old elements and local materials. We're always evolving our restaurant design, so that's what I've been digging right now.
@indayallday on Instagram