Sign and Dine

In the far corner of the bustling Satyaniketan Bazaar, Ecos – a small, invisible cafe. It sits among the many new foods that have recently opened stores. However, this is not another restaurant in the block; It is run by staff who are deaf and mute.

“There are a few fast-service restaurants that employ differently competent employees, but traditional restaurants with a wider menu do not hire them, especially in jobs that require customer interaction. We believe that, like everything else, serving customers is a skill that can be taught. However, serving them well is something that has to come from the heart, ”said Kshitij Behl, 22, one of the owners of the cafeteria.

Themed around the concept of “inspiration”, Echos is the brainchild of five friends, all in their twenties. “Everyone is selling the same food at the same price in the same area. It all sounded annoying. We wanted a challenge, we wanted to serve good food, but we wanted to start something with the heart. In the end, everything is fine, ”said Shivangsh Kanwar, 22, who manages the restaurant.

Ravi Kanojia is the patron of Ecos in Satyaniketan Market, Delhi

The owners have devised a clever mechanism to reduce errors. Kanwar said, “Listen with your eyes, speak with your hands, this is the mantra for everyone in the cafe. When you toggle a switch on your table, it lights up a bulb, which alerts a server that it needs a table. The cafe has a special menu with separate codes for more than 150 dishes. “We give the customer a menu, a notepad and a pen. He can write the code for the dish he wants and the way he wants, tear the sheet and give it to the server, ”Behl said.

The queue card on each table reads ‘Water Please’, ‘Bill Please’, and ‘Call the Manager’, which makes it easier to communicate with staff. The whole sign language is clearly spelled on the walls of the cafe, more enterprising can even try to talk to the staff.

Launched just a fortnight ago, Echoes offers regular fare for affordable pizza, pasta, wrappers and rolls, but the experimenters can choose foods like waffles (waffle-based pizza), pink pasta, mac n cheese cutlets (manufactured macaroni and cheese) and Hyderabadi style pen. No-wine sangria is another crowd-pleasing.

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