An Indian restaurant owner explained that his business had been written off and that he was “made fun of” before he had even taken his first order.
This was because of the odd location – on Gemini Retail Park, just off Charon Way, junction 8 onto the M62.
It’s not a common spot for an independent restaurant and takeout, with surrounding businesses made up of chain brands like Subway, Starbucks, Travelodge, and Harvester.
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And Bombay 8 owner Mofozul Miah admits it was a gamble – but it’s a gamble that has certainly paid off as he continues to win awards and build a loyal following.
âI would say it’s a big bet I took because of the location,â he said. “You haven’t seen a lot of restaurants in a shopping park, so that was a question mark, is this going to be something successful?
âPeople think this is the wrong place to do business. When I first opened, or before I opened, people were laughing at me.
âObviously, with a commercial park, the rent and the price are high. But I thought to myself that if it’s high rent and high rates, it’s because of the volume of people moving through the park.
Miah’s bet paid off; this location hasn’t stopped Bombay 8 from becoming a local favorite.
The restaurant has now built up a loyal base of customers and regulars.
âIt’s like a family thing,â Miah said, âWe have this couple coming more or less every weekendâ¦ and they always have the Chicken Chat.â
The 45-year-old, who opened Bombay 8 nine years ago, thinks customer service is so important.
He said, âIt doesn’t just work for any business, you don’t just open the door and people walk in. Obviously the food has to be good, the service has to be good.
Especially in the food industry, your service, your smile, your quality, it all matters.
Miah’s staff are also essential to its success.
âOver the years, I have tried to choose the staff so that there are good people working for me, so that they understand my customers and provide good service,â he said.
Bombay 8 was recognized for its good food and service by winning the Curry Life Mag’s Best Restaurant 2021 award.
The awards ceremony, held in London on Sunday 10 October, saw Bombay 8 compete with Indian restaurants across the UK.
Warrington North Labor MP Charlotte Nichols attended the event in support of Bombay 8.
Miah thanks her customers for their visit and their good comments: âI think over the years people have come to try it and they have enjoyed it. And word of mouth comes out, it spreads and it spreadsâ¦ they want to give us their feedback so that we win the award.
Favorite menu items include a Shashlik Korai, which is chicken, green peppers, onions and tomatoes cooked in the tandoor with a “special sauce” made in a korai dish.
Other meat dishes such as Nepalese and Afghan chicken, and seafood dishes such as chili Chingri are also popular.
You can also opt for more well-known curry dishes such as Rogan Josh, Kormas and Jalfrezis.
âWe have a lot of different dishes from the other restaurants in the area,â Miah said. âMany dishes contain fresh vegetables and fresh fish. It makes it a bit unique.
“It’s like a wow factorâ¦ whatever you give has to be perfect because people pay, people travel far and wide to enjoy the night with quality food.”
Even a lockdown couldn’t stop Bombay 8 from serving its loyal customers with take-out food.
âCustomers had traveled to pick up food, where they could order from other places,â Miah said. “So that shows that we are doing something right.”
And Miah is eagerly awaiting the future of Bombay 8 after the coronavirus pandemic.
“It’s more or less back to normal for us,” he said.
âWe are already more or less booked until 2:30 pm on Christmas Dayâ¦ We are looking forward to Christmas, people missed last year and the year before. So they are all delighted to be back.