Photo courtesy of Batik Asian Cuisine & Dumpling Bar
Batik Asian Cuisine in Gaithersburg, MD recently became a Clean Currents wind powered business. I sat down with owner Henry to learn about his experience raising picky eaters; inspiring him and his wife Emily to share their love for healthy food and a healthy environment with the community through Batik.
Why did you decide to open Batik & how long have you been open?
My family and I have been in the restaurant business for over 25 years, We enjoy the opportunity to the share food we experienced growing up in Southeast Asia and through travels. In June 2009 My wife and I decided to open Batik not only serve great food, but also to share our experiences raising three kids and trying to make healthy food fun and enjoyable.
What do the dumplings mean to you and your family?
The idea of a dumpling bar is peculiar, but the reason we decided to open it resonates with nearly all parents. When my kids were young, like many, they didn't want to eat vegetables. My wife came up with the idea to fill dumplings with healthy vegetables and make them taste great so the kids would love them. It was the only way we could get them to eat their veggies!
What has helped you be successful?
Success comes from making dumplings that come in unique variety of flavor combinations, are healthy, and delicious. Right now we have 13 different dumplings on the menu. All our dumpling wrappers are made from scratch in the restaurant and we fill them with family recipes or our new creations. We are dedicated to using the best quality ingredients that are nutritious and taste great.
How would you convince someone who is not familiar with your cuisine to try it out?
Our variety means there is something for everyone. We have the traditional Southeast Asian noodle and fried rice, and other familiar dishes, barbeque skewers, and of course the dumplings. But these aren't like any dumplings you've had before. My favorite is the Madras Magic. It's the delicious mix of spices used in Indian cooking, with chicken and vegetables. We even have dumplings inspired by American soul food, bbq, and Superbowl Champs -- Packers 45.
Why did you choose to power your restaurant with wind power?
Growing up in New York, I saw environmental degradation first hand. In a congested city there's lots of trash and pollution, rivers are dirty, and you notice the quality of your environment is being affected. Having kids, I'm concerned about the future I'll leave to them and their kids. The next generation deserves to have the same comforts if not better in health that we have today, and that starts with us now. Wind power is one way I can help to leave them a healthy environment.
Why do you think it's important for small businesses to run on wind power?
Taking care of the environment is something we need to do together. It takes one person at a time to make an impact. I can do my part by running my restaurant on wind power and showing our customers and the community that wind power is an option for them, too. It's important to encourage my customers, community, and peers to do their part as well.
What is the best part of owning a restaurant?
The most gratifying experience is when customers enjoy the food and come in again and again. It's great to be able to get to know your customers, and food is a great way to connect with people.
Do you have any upcoming specials?
Every Tuesday night we have half price bottle of wine and Thursdays are 1/2 price bottle beer. We are always working on ideas to expand our menu and provide more options for customers. Look out for our gluten free dumplings and more vegetarian options!
Batik Asian Cuisine and Dumpling Bar, in Gaithersburg is 100% local wind powered by Clean Currents. To celebrate, we're giving away 2 - $25 gif cards per day, Monday -- Friday this week on our Facebook page. Don't miss out!