Itís a little over midnight and youíre working late to meet deadlines. You suddenly develop a craving for a quick bite or are in need of an antacid to wash away the heartburn post a large, greasy dinner. Most of the eateries would have either closed for the day or would have stopped delivering food items by that hour. The 24x7 chemist is also too far for comfort. So what do you do? If youíre in Gurgaon, Mumbai, Bangalore or some parts of south Delhi, help is now at hand, or rather a call or click away.
With most Indian cities calling it a day well before midnight, many working professionals, party-goers, students and even late-night movie enthusiasts are left at the mercy of unhygienic and unsafe back-alley shops to buy food or emergency items. To fill this vacuum, some start-ups have now come up with the novel idea of late-night services that deliver freshly cooked food, among other essentials. All you have to do is log on to their websites or simply call their numbers and place your order. Most of them are open till about 5 in the morning.
Batman Delivers, Fly By Knight, Midnight Munchies, Midnight Sutra, Take It That One and Mad Bites are some of the names that are picking up business in the niche sector. They not only deliver food and beverages at your doorstep, but also cigarettes and chocolates, and even antacids and contraceptives.
Mumbai-based Mad Bites was started by Jigar Zatakia, 24, an engineering graduate from KJ Somaiya Vidyavihar. ďIt was very difficult to get decent food after midnight. We often had to sleep on an empty stomach or eat unhygienic food. Thatís when we planned to come up with a service that can cater to people like us,Ē says Zatakia. Mad Bitesí menu ranges from salads, sandwiches, burgers, hotdogs and pizzas to salads, paranthas and biryani.
Mad Bites has seen a huge demand among students and working professionals. Its minimum order policy is R350. Its highest-selling items are chicken hotdogs and burgers, which it offers from 8 pm till about 4 in the morning.